© alexander podshivalov dreamstime.com PCB | September 09, 2020
Corona crisis hits the PCB industry with force
In particular, the corona-related developments in April and May of this year contributed to the fact that PCB manufacturers recorded a sales decrease of 17.4% in the second quarter of 2020 compared to the same period in the previous year, reports the PCB and Electronic Systems trade association in the ZVEI - Zentralverband Elektrotechnik- und Electronics industry.
In the first quarter of this year, PCB manufacturers in the Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH) region recorded a 7.5% decline in sales compared to 2019. Although the sales figures were somewhat better in June, the printed circuit board industry is still anticipating a decline in sales of around 10% to 15% for the full year. Order intake also fell in the second quarter of the current year by a hefty 39% compared to the previous quarter. Not only were the order volume lower, but existing orders were postponed or cancelled - even at short notice. In the first quarter, however, the printed circuit board manufacturers benefitted from the fact that China was not been able to deliver as of January due to the Corona crisis and orders were relocated back to the DACH region. The book-to-bill ratio reached a value of 0.78 in the second quarter. Due to the high order intake in February and March, the first half year book-to-bill ratio stood at 0.93. Many companies had to temporarily close due to the restrictions on outdoor activities and the lack of sales opportunities. The comprehensive short-time work regulation prevented major layoffs from occurring. The number of employees fell by 4%.