24 Jul 2024


Motion controls sales fell in 2012, but will rebound in 2013

The global market for motion control products contracted by 1.9% in 2012, compared to 2011, according to a new study by IMS Research. But the analyst expects the market to rebound in 2013 with a revenue growth of nearly 5%, spurred by a recovery in the Chinese market, but limited by the continuing recession in the Eurozone.

In recent years, global sales of motion controls have grown strongly, with revenues soaring by more than 20% in both 2010 and 2011, to reach a value of around $13.1bn. But 2012 presented a very different picture, with the recession in the Eurozone and a softening of the Chinese economy causing sales to drop well below expectations.
“The biggest surprise in 2012 was the extent of the contraction in the Chinese motion control market, where revenues are forecast to have declined by an estimated 16.5–18.5%,” says IMS analyst, Michelle Figgs. “Reduced order rates resulted from overcapacity concerns and conservative buying patterns from machine-builders.”
Sales of low-end servo products in China have been most heavily affected, impacting the Chinese and Japanese suppliers who rely on this market. The market for high-end servo products was more stable.
In the rest of Asia, excluding Japan, revenues from sales of motion control products are projected to have grown by more than 5% in 2012. “Growth was driven by the Indian, South Korean and Taiwanese markets,” Figgs reports. “However, the total Asian market (excluding Japan) is forecast to have declined by nearly 10%, because China accounts for the majority of revenues.”

The motion control markets in the Americas, EMEA and Japan are thought to have maintained their revenue growth in 2012, although at much lower rates than in the previous two years. The American market was the fastest growing, expanding by around 4.2%, followed by the EMEA market at 1.6%. Due to a struggling semiconductor industry, the Japanese motion control market is thought to have grown by just 0.5% in 2012.