mobile | classic
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology Magazine

Follow us on:
Follow us on Facebook Share via Twitter Share via LinkedIn


Electronics Buyers' Guide

Electronics Manufacturing & Production Handbook 2019


Prospects for 2009
26 November 2008, News

Having reviewed the prospects of the South African electronics industry from a component distribution point of view, for the past 20 years or so, the recurring theme is the market volatility we have seen over these years.

The electronics industry, and particularly the semiconductor industry, has always been a highly cyclical one, to such an extent that many semiconductor companies have either merged, been acquired, or ceased to be in business – a kind of ‘feast or famine’ scenario.

It takes huge amounts of capital for new manufacturing and R&D investments just to stay in the industry. I recall a number of downturns: from 1974 to 1987 to 1996 and 2001. We seem to have emerged out of these downturns in relatively good shape and it remains to be seen what happens this time around.

South Africa seems to have escaped much of the global financial turmoil and the banking crises that hit the US and Europe. For us, the major effect has been that our currency has come under pressure and declined against those currencies of our major trading partners. There could be a positive side to this, as our exports would be more competitive with a weaker Rand, and we will need to work aggressively on capturing export orders.

With the weaker Rand we find ourselves being more competitive as an outsourcing contract manufacturing destination, competing favourably with many European contract manufacturers. Furthermore, as far as the import of fixed equipment is concerned, the weaker Rand makes these imports more expensive, thus helping our local manufacturers.

Looking back, the past year has been a relatively good one for the electronics industry, with component supply lead times being at normal levels and prices remaining stable or following the long established pattern of reducing average selling prices in foreign currency. Lead times have often been a function, not of greater demand, but of semiconductor suppliers reducing their capacity, in order to cut their costs. Global downturns such as this one tend to increase this problem, so where one would expect easy supply due to lower demand, one actually sees long lead times due to lower supplier capacity.

Over the years, the electronics industry has learnt to be resourceful and to look after its own interests, without expecting too much help from government. This has taught us to focus on niche business opportunities and South Africa has been relatively successful here, looking at markets like energy and water metering, GSM applications and vehicle tracking.

As usual, I remain the eternal optimist. We are part of the leading global component distributor, Avnet, are financially rock solid, have large global inventories to tap into, and will focus on our value-added offering to our customers, giving them the service they need and deserve.

Tough market conditions often present opportunities to excellent companies. It is our challenge to ‘manage’ our path through this downturn. And we at Avnet Kopp certainly intend to do just that.

For more information contact Albert Kopp, Avnet Kopp, +27 (0)11 809 6100,,

Supplied By: Avnet South Africa
Tel: +27 11 319 8600
Fax: +27 11 319 8650
  Share on Facebook Share via Twitter Share via LinkedIn    

Further reading:

  • From the editor's desk: Making an aaS of ourselves
    28 August 2019, Technews Publishing, News
    First of all, I must extend the sincere apologies of Technews Publishing to Hi-Q Electronics. We have worked closely with Hi-Q for many years and yet still managed to get its address and contact details ...
  • Electronics news digest
    28 August 2019, News
    South Africa •Canadian technology company Sciencetech is now distributed in South Africa by Intercal. For over 33 years, Sciencetech’s products have been exported to countries around the world, within ...
  • Clearing the static: Electrostatic packaging - Topic 6
    28 August 2019, Altico Static Control Solutions, News
    The purpose of electrostatic discharge (ESD) packaging is to protect ESD-sensitive objects from ESD damage; especially when items are being transported outside of the designated ESD protected area. ESD ...
  • What can sport teach us about MRO procurement?
    28 August 2019, RS Components (SA), News
    Just like triathlon transitions, if you don?t respect the details and aren?t supportive about making manufacturing flexible, as a supplier you aren?t contributing to your customers? success.
  • AREI hosts industry for business breakfast
    28 August 2019, News
    Attendees of a business breakfast hosted by AREI (Association of Representatives for the Electronics Industry) on 24 July were treated to an inspirational talk by computer scientist and entrepreneur Stafford Masie.
  • Win a Microchip evaluation kit
    28 August 2019, News
    Dataweek readers are being offered the chance to win a SAM L21 Xplained Pro evaluation kit for evaluating and prototyping with Microchip Technology’s ultra-low-power SAM L21 ARM Cortex-M0+ based microcontrollers ...
  • Wits University to feature at AI Expo Africa
    28 August 2019, News
    Wits University will be sending a high-level delegation to this year’s AI Expo Africa, where it will launch a major research initiative that is intended to bring about a step change in scientific research ...
  • Qi-compliant wireless charging coils
    28 August 2019, Avnet South Africa, Passive Components
    Vishay has expanded its offering of Qi-compliant wireless charging transmitter and receiver coils with the introduction of 14 new products in industry-standard shield sizes. Consisting of eight single-coil ...
  • LED flicker, and how to prevent it
    28 August 2019, Avnet South Africa, Opto-Electronics
    With the growing popularity of LED lighting, especially now that very cheap LED luminaires are coming to the market, flicker is becoming more of a problem. Flicker, a repetitive switching on and off ...
  • 3 Watt DC-DC converters
    28 August 2019, Avnet South Africa, Power Electronics / Power Management
    Aimtec has introduced three new series of switching regulators – the AMSRB1-78JZ, AMSRL1-78JZ and AMSRL-78JZ – all meeting the EN62368 standard and suitable for IoT (Internet of Things) applications. The ...
  • u-blox sells 500 millionth GNSS receiver
    28 August 2019, RF Design, News
    u-blox recently sold its 500 millionth global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receiver. As the only technology capable of delivering absolute position anywhere on the planet, GNSS-based positioning ...
  • New African AI initiative at Wits University
    28 August 2019, News
    The Molecular Sciences Institute (MSI) at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg, South Africa, in partnership with the Cirrus Initiative, today announced plans for a new artificial ...

Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd
1st Floor, Stabilitas House
265 Kent Ave, Randburg, 2194
South Africa
Publications by Technews
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology
Electronics Buyers’ Guide (EBG)

Hi-Tech Security Solutions
Hi-Tech Security Business Directory

Motion Control in Southern Africa
Motion Control Buyers’ Guide (MCBG)

South African Instrumentation & Control
South African Instrumentation & Control Buyers’ Guide (IBG)
Terms & conditions of use, including privacy policy
PAIA Manual


    Classic | Mobile

Copyright © Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved.