The unpredictability of the Coronavirus outbreak is a major challenge for our entire global economy. In the beginning of May 2020, OE-A conducted a second survey among its members to find out in what way the flexible, organic and printed electronics industry is being affected as well as to allow an outlook of future developments.
The clear message is that 90% of the survey participants are impacted in one way or another. Half of these respondents are even stating that they are moderately to severely affected. As a result, OE-A expects the positive forecast of the OE-A Business Climate Survey conducted earlier this year to radically change.
OE-A members indicate that significant impairments are especially seen in both the internal working process and everyday working life. Furthermore, supply chain disruptions are particularly prevalent from China and Europe whereas loss or cancelations of orders are mainly experienced from North America and Europe. In addition, 80% of the survey participants forecast significant losses in sales. Moreover, nearly two-thirds of the respondents have taken varied measures to adjust capacity and more than half of the companies are considering reducing their investment plans for 2020 significantly.
Looking into the near future, more than half of the respondents stated to expect an improvement of the supply chain situation within the next three months. There is however uncertainty about the impact on incoming orders. On average, after easing of government restrictions, a business recovery period of more than six months is being foreseen.
Nevertheless, despite of all the challenges we are currently facing, OE-A is noticing that the printed electronics community is resilient and creative: From employees working from home to developing Corona-related solutions with the help of printed electronics. Especially in the healthcare industry we can see the relevance of this innovative technology. OE-A will continue to do its best to keep the printed electronics community informed as well as to support the OE-A members in any way possible. As the exact dimensions of this crisis are still unknown, it is important to focus on joint efforts and to benefit from the OE-A network.