It came as surprise to hear IPC say sales were sluggish in January as PCB Solutions saw a record January sales month. “We were very fortunate to have a strong head start to the year,” stated Greg Engstrom, president of PCB Solutions. “Our suppliers have done a great job producing quality product for our customers and we continue to gain market share each month.”
Sales were weighted heavier towards our flagship product rigid PCBs but we have a lot of good work in the pipeline for flex work as well. We continue to look forward to a strong year of aggressive sales growth. Here is what IPC said for the month of January:
PCB Industry Growth Rates and Book-to-Bill Ratios Announced
Total North American PCB shipments were down 1.1 percent in January 2013 from January 2012, and bookings decreased 4.0 percent year over year. Month-to-month growth rates are not available in January due to the change in IPC’s survey sample as of the first of the year. The book-to-bill ratio for the North American PCB industry crossed into positive territory in January and stands at 1.01.
“The book-to-bill ratio for the North American PCB industry strengthened for the second consecutive month, turning the corner in December after an eight-month downturn,” according to Sharon Starr, IPC director of market research. “Sales and orders, however, remained sluggish in January.”
The book-to-bill ratios are calculated by dividing the value of orders booked over the past three months by the value of sales billed during the same period from companies in IPC’s survey sample. A ratio of more than 1.00 suggests that current demand is ahead of supply, which is a positive indicator for sales growth over the next two to three months.