U.S. companies' shipments of personal computers to Latin America soared 40 percent in the third quarter of the year, driven by higher demand in Mexico and Brazil, according to Dataquest Inc.

In all, nearly 1.3 million units were shipped in the period, with 433,000 PCs going to Mexico. Brazil was No. 2 in the region, with shipments surpassing 351,000 units, followed by Argentina, with over 136,000 units shipped.

Luis Anavitarte, a Dataquest analyst, said one reason for the growth in the Mexican market was the success of a Telmex-Prodigy Internet Plus deal that offers consumers a choice of an Acer, Compaq or Apple computer bundled with Internet access paid for monthly via telephone bills.

Compaq Computer Corp. experienced the strongest growth among top-tier vendors, as its shipments increased 84 percent over the third quarter of last year. Acer Inc. moved into the No. 2 position because of its strong performance in the Mexican market, Dataquest said. International Business Machines Corp. retained third position, but its market share fell.

A LATIN AMERICAN BOOST

For third-quarter sales of U.S. personal computers to Latin America, Compaq Computer topped the list in number of units shipped and in growth from the year-ago period.

COMPANY: Compaq

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 166,098

Market share: 18.1%

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 305,130

Market share: 23.8%

Growth*: 83.7%

COMPANY: Acer

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 67,551

Market share: 7.4

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 118,281

Market share: 9.2

Growth*: 75.1

COMPANY: IBM

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 101,525

Market share: 11.1

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 103,701

Market share: 8.1

Growth*: 2.1

COMPANY: Hewlett-Packard

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 56,088

Market share: 6.1

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 66,381

Market share: 5.2

Growth*: 18.4

COMPANY: Others

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 526,115

Market share: 57.3

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 686,532

Market share: 53.6

Growth*: 30.5

COMPANY: Total market

THIRD QUARTER 1998

Shipments: 917,377

Market share: 100.0

THIRD QUARTER 1999

Shipments: 1,280,025

Market share: 100.0

Growth*: 39.5

* Growth shows percentage increase in shipments

NOTE: Table reflects PCs only (desktop and notebook). Server-marketed PCs and PC upgrades are not included.

SOURCE: Dataquest