Posted by Andrew Shephard on Nov 16, 2012
It seems Europe’s main electronics industry trade fair has more than lived up to expectations this year. It closes later today, I have no idea on the visitor numbers but having spent quality time there this week, to me it seemed as busy as anyone could have hoped for.
Munich and its Messe still provide an accessible, if expensive, environment for the world’s device and component industry to do business. I spoke to media, I spoke to participants and other professionals, and backed-up with conversations overheard about visitors’ experiences to the show, it’s clear that business was being done and development projects have certainly not evaporated.
Yes the supply chain is in flux and the specification process is re-inventing itself. It’s a very competitive time for commodity electronics and the automotive sector is suffering, which hits us harder in Europe. But, there was some very sustained activity on the stands of the bigger semiconductor players, just like there always is.
The large number of image-less mini-booth Chinese manufacturers, now distributed throughout the show rather than in a hall of their own as in previous events, just went to emphasise the growth that’s happened in that part of the business. However, I have to say the visitors went there to see the people they knew. There was very little interaction with the lesser-known players and they seemed even more out of place this year than ever. I felt rather sorry for them.
The show was maybe a little smaller this year with far fewer double-decker stands, but there wasn’t a quiet spot anywhere and even the city-wide power-failure, which wiped Munich out on Thursday morning, didn’t keep people away. Pencil in a visit for two years time.