Acer names new chairman as business struggles

Acer named one of its co-founders, George Huang, to the post of company chairman as the Taiwanese PC maker battles to become a force in mobile devices and software.

On Wednesday, Acer’s board of directors elected Huang to the position as previous chairman and co-founder Stan Shih stepped down according to plan. Both Shih and Huang returned to Acer in November to lead a corporate restructuring of the struggling PC maker.

During that time, Huang supervised the company’s reform plans and was involved in hiring its current CEO, Jason Chen, in December. He also helped develop Acer’s new strategy, which has centered more on mobile devices, and bringing private cloud services to consumers.

Acer will build on its existing hardware business, while tapping opportunities in the cloud, Huang said Wednesday. This month, the company plans to roll out its “Build Your Own Cloud” service in the form of mobile apps that let users synchronize files and multimedia between devices.

Huang, who had been retired, previously served as president of Acer’s PC business. Now the company’s leaders face the major task of reinventing the company, as its core business in PCs continues to diminish.

Last year, the company posted three consecutive quarters of net losses, before barely making a profit in this year’s first quarter. At the Computex trade show in Taipei earlier this month, the company said little about PCs, and instead showed off new mobile phones and tablets.

Acer’s outgoing chairman, Shih, will remain on Acer’s board of directors and plans to oversee the company’s Build Your Own Cloud Strategy, but won’t directly manage the business.

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