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Stone sets sights on sixty thousand notebook shipments

KitGuru has come across some bold confidence from a British PC company and we're very happy to report it here.

You're all familiar with how much time KitGuru spends on leisure activities. We believe that spending half your life sleeping and the other half drinking is about as healthy as we want to get, especially when it comes to our in-depth news gathering service.

While slumped in bars, international Vice Presidents and the like fail to notice our digital recording devices and begin to speak the truth. We like the truth. So do you. Admit it.

Here's the last thing we heard before passing out earlier today: A British PC company is setting strong sales targets in granite. Stone us.

At the beginning, there was just James Bird. That was twenty years ago. Now he's surrounded by a senior management team and a lot of happy customers. Bird puts his ability to create happy customers down to the things he learned about how not to do it while with Packard Bell during a 12 month stint in his youth.

Over the years, Stone Computers has acquired many top brands, including Dan Technologies, Compusys and Rock.

The company closed 2009 on £70m with over 300 employees. Impressive stuff.

During a recent board meeting, we believe that James Bird sat alongside Simon Harbridge, David Wilcox, Colin Capewell and Peter Berks, before announcing his most ambitious targets yet – for 2011.

Now that's what KitGuru calls a motley crew

Part of that target is to pass the 60,000 mark for the sale of portable solutions – including netbooks and notebooks. If Stone is successful, then that milestone alone will bring in more than £25m. And that's before you get to desktops, additional products, software, installation and services. Overall, the chaps at Stone are aiming to produce more than 150,000 PCs in 2011. Even without further investigation, this has to be painful for Research Machines to watch.

So why do education authorities, emergency services and councils up and down the country choose Stone in the face of immensely stiff competition from Dell and HP?  We're going to guess that offering a 5-year, next day on site warranty is going to play a part. Impressive.

Also impressive is the fact that Stone has its own recycling facilities which process over 500 tonnes a year. The cherry on this particular cake is Bird's close ties to IT Schools Africa, which intelligently repurposes old systems to give them a second life among the kids who need them most.

Have to say - it's great that Stone supports stuff like this

KitGuru says: Stone may or may not achieve all of its goals for 2011, but it won't be for a lack of trying. We like a British success story and this looks like one of them.

Comment below or in the KitGuru forums.

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