23 Jul 2024


500 jobs go at Rockwell as US recession bites

The US energy crisis could boost the AC drives market, a new study predicts. In a report looking at the prospects for the North American drives market in the period to 2006, the analyst Motion Tech Trends predicts the introduction of subsidised demand-side management schemes, including rebates for installing drives.

“As the crisis spreads, we expect to see programmes like these becoming a mainstay,” says John Armstrong, one of the report`s authors. “This can help to keep the AC drives market growing over the next five years.”

The analysts report signs of maturation in the US market with the only significant near-term change likely to be the planned merger of Toshiba and Schneider Electric`s Square D drives operations late this year or early in 2002. The combined sales of these two companies will put them in North America`s top three, neck-and-neck with Yaskawa but still significantly behind Rockwell.

The long-term effects of consolidation in the market could create new opportunities, the report suggests. “Consolidation disrupts relationships which can open up opportunities for other suppliers,” Armstrong explains. “And while the Internet has not yet proven to be a major channel, it is also a disruptive enabler that can provide opportunities for new entrants”.