Intel Denies Report It Will Exit Server Motherboard Business

A Digitimes report on Monday claimed Intel was considering an exit from the server motherboard business in the second half of the year. The report cited sources from competing motherboard manufacturers Asus and Gigabyte, which, according to Digitimes, would receive a major boost in shipments if Intel left the market.

The Digitimes report claimed Intel was reducing its manpower and resources for its server motherboard operation and that it was only a matter of time before the company closed it down for good.

[Related: Intel Partners Say New Haswell Motherboards In Short Supply ]

Intel, however, strongly denied the report and issued the following statement to CRN.

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"The rumors that Intel will exit the branded server motherboard business are categorically untrue. Intel is committed to our sever board and systems business and will continue to grow volume and revenue year-over-year, just introduced new server motherboards based on the recently launched Intel Xeon processor E3-1200 v3 Product Family, and we are hitting key development milestones on the next-generation of dual-socket server boards for 2014 and actively planning 2015 products," the Intel statement read. "Intel's server board and systems business is accelerating and we are looking forward to being the trusted partner to the server channel for many years to come."

The Digitimes report comes after Intel's decision to exit the desktop motherboard business ; the chip maker announced in January that it would begin to wind down the business this year and cease operations by 2016.

The move was a controversial one for Intel partners, many of whom preferred doing business with Intel because the company offered better partner support, such as overnight shipping for warranty-covered replacement boards, than other manufacturers like Asus and Gigabyte.

Intel defended its desktop motherboard move by saying traditional desktop boars were an increasingly small part of the company's business, and that there were plenty of third-party offerings from other manufacturers.

But while the desktop PC business may be shrinking, the same can't be said for Intel's server business; the chip maker's data center business grew 6 percent last year, and Intel channel chief Steve Dallman recently said server sales through the channel are growing at 30 percent.

Marty Lantz, chief technical officer of MapleTronics, a system builder based in Minnetonka, Minn., said the Digitimes report doesn't make sense given the growth Intel is seeing with its server business and the sizeable investments the company has made in the channel. "I can tell you right now this isn't true," Lantz said. "Intel will absolutely not go away from the server motherboard business."