Apple shares are an "attractive" buy, according to ABN Amro analyst Robert Cihra.

Cihra expects Apple shares to reach $25 in the next 12 months, and believes the company will outperform other PC manufacturers due to its ability to fix pricing and product cycles.

He said: "In the near term, global PC-markets remain weak, but we think Apple's valuation is attractive. The company has some latitude, since it controls its own product cycles and pricing."

The analyst goes on to say that he expects sales of $6.7 billion for the full year to September 2002 - the equivalent of a 23 per cent overall growth, or a dividend of 76 cents per share.

Cynics have belittled Apple's 3-5 per cent share of the personal computer market. However, Cihra claims this may be key to Apple's success. He said: "Apple's proprietary Mac platform, and focus on in-house hardware and software engineering, make it a niche vendor. We think it's this very differentiation that can offer a route to premium positioning and profitability in an otherwise maturing PC-market."