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European gears and motors market has `scope for growth`

01 November, 2002

There is "hidden scope for growth" in the European gearboxes and geared motors market, according to a new analysis* which predicts that the market will expand from $2.82bn last year to $3.98 by 2008. The market analyst Frost & Sullivan says it detects "early signals of growing investment across the industry" with the growth being prompted by the increasing popularity of smaller, more efficient geared systems.

Frost & Sullivan analyst Ozan Dogruer predicts that the planetary gearbox market will exhibit the strongest growth as the technology gains greater acceptance. In addition, he says, the growing demand for helical gearboxes for medium- and heavy-duty applications should reinforce this technology`s dominance of the market and help to sustain its growth.

Gabriela Martinho, the study`s co-author, points out that many European manufacturers are under pressure to improve their profitability, especially in the geared motors sector. But mounting pressure on users to upgrade to more advanced technologies could help to boost demand.

She expects geared motors to have a lower growth rate than for gearboxes but predicts that sales of helical geared motors will benefit from the pressure for more efficient technologies and the use of combined gear-motor systems at lower power ratings.

The study reports that end-users have become highly price-conscious, and that pricing has become a primary purchasing factor in this sector.

Despite the mergers and acquisitions that have taken place in this market in recent years, there are just three companies with significant market shares: SEW-Eurodrive; Flender and Bonfiglioli. The remaining 64.1% of sales are generated by companies with market shares of less than 5%.

Although the mechanical handling market remains the biggest user of gearboxes and gearmotors in Europe, accounting for 28% of sales last year, Frost & Sullivan expects its share to decline slightly over the coming years. It predicts that some users in this market will move to alternative technologies, such as variable speed drives and motors.

* Gearboxes and geared motors markets in Europe (report B127). Price €5,000. Details on 44 (0) 20 7730 3438.

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