Acer is taking the plunge back into servers in EMEA, but it's keen to avoid previous mistakes

A logo of Acer, Taiwanese multinational hardware and electronics corporation specializing in advanced electronics technology seen at COMPUTEX 2023 in Taipei
(Image credit: Getty Images)

If there is something missing from the Acer portfolio that its rivals have plenty of, servers would be its biggest market gap. For Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) there is almost nothing on offer – certainly compared to the Asian market, where Acer has many offerings through its Altos brand. 

This, however, is set to change. During a press event in Switzerland, Acer’s EMEA president Emmanuel Fromont expressed the company's desire to find a market in the EMEA regions for servers.

The presentation was more about Acer’s PC and channel offerings, hardly mentioning servers beyond Fromont’s brief statement. And to be fair to Acer, it gave journalists plenty to discuss with AI upgrades to most of its prominent laptop lines, new after-sales commitments, digital signage devices, and sustainability pledges.

But that brief mention of a relaunch of its server business in the EMEA caught ITPro’s attention.

Acer has been here before, having tried to sell servers in EMEA for decades. ITPro’s resident server expert Dave Mitchell reviewed some of its offerings almost ten years ago. Again, it was under the Altos brand – or Intel’s white box Server System platforms rebranded as Altos.

Before that, they were under the name Gateway. However, its previous attempts fizzled out and understandably there was a note of caution when we spoke to EMEA vice president, Massimiliano Rossi.

“So now that there's more attention to AI and servers, we are rethinking, step by step, according to the market, to reintroduce servers in EMEA because today, this business is mainly Asia business,” Rossi explained to ITPro.

“At this point, I have to say, it is not easy to give you an answer because we need to understand country by country, which is the capability and the opportunity, to deliver server because server is a totally different product.”

Acer is taking things slow

Although open to discussing the potential of a relaunch of its server business in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, ‘step by step’ was a heavy caveat for Rossi. This is because Acer isn’t taking it lightly, it doesn’t want a repeat of its previous attempts, and the offering, from top to bottom needs to work, so even the service perspective and the channel approach will be a ‘step by step’ process.

As Rossi puts it, Acer has “been there in the past and if it goes back it needs to be sure that it is able to deliver what it promises to its customers”.

There are, however, reasons to be optimistic, according to Rossi. The company is doing extremely well on commercial ventures in the EMEA arena; it has a strong footprint across the region and has started to introduce servers and workstations under the Altos brand in some European countries where it is also evaluating markets, such as Switzerland and Italy.

It would like to bring servers to more countries, but again, it is step by step because Acer is aware that this isn’t an “easy business”.


The what and why of this is more clear-cut. Acer’s approach won’t be a “super high level”, according to Rossi, as the company will likely focus on smaller, SMB-focused offerings. And it is largely about keeping up with both trends and competition.

“Some server companies are really increasing demand because of generative AI which also requires power in the cloud,” Rossi said. 

“Even now with the latest development on Copilot+ and the new NPUs and new set of problems, the AI computing power will move to the edge or to the client. And this is a big opportunity for us because we sell a lot of clients.”

Bobby Hellard

Bobby Hellard is ITPro's Reviews Editor and has worked on CloudPro and ChannelPro since 2018. In his time at ITPro, Bobby has covered stories for all the major technology companies, such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook, and regularly attends industry-leading events such as AWS Re:Invent and Google Cloud Next.

Bobby mainly covers hardware reviews, but you will also recognize him as the face of many of our video reviews of laptops and smartphones.