A worldwide broadcasting industry that is in steady recovery, although somewhat lagging in North America, is the overall picture painted by the latest Industry Trends Survey released by the IABM (International Association of Broadcasting Manufacturers). The survey results reflect a North American broadcast and media technology market that is at least six months behind the rest of the world in rebounding from the global recession, but trends and expectations do indicate a more rapid improvement going forward.
Although tempered by continued uncertainty in some regions, confidence in the industry continues to grow — as evidenced by increasing investment in research and development as well as headcount. However, companies continue to be challenged by manufacturing capacity and supply chain problems that frustrate order fulfilment, and customer deferral of orders remains the largest constraint to order growth. Respondents also cited a shortage of skilled technical resources as another barrier to growth and order fulfilment. Executives do, however, feel generally optimistic about the months ahead, with 46 per cent stating that market conditions will significantly improve by spring. The ‘IABM Confidence Ratio’ which was standing at minus 3 during the recession is at a very respectable plus 11 in the latest survey.