Out of Place?

I probably am getting ahead of myself — in fact, I hope I am — but the epic war over the world’s placement equipment business is more and more looking like it won’t include Siemens. The Munich-based OEM, which last year put its electronics assembly business on the block, today announced another difficult quarter.

On the bright side, the placement equipment unit narrowed its first-quarter loss, but sales for Siemens’ discontinued businesses (of which electronics assembly equipment makes up the major share) for the period ended Dec. 31 fell 69% year-over-year.

Perhaps worse, the loss was €15 million on €62 million in sales. Obviously, that’s not sustainable.

I know lots of people at Siemens, and I have tremendous respect for CEO Guenter Lauber. But with only modest improvement expected in the sector this year, it doesn’t look good.

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About Mike

Mike Buetow is president of the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (pcea.net). He previously was editor-in-chief of Circuits Assembly magazine, the leading publication for electronics manufacturing, and PCD&F, the leading publication for printed circuit design and fabrication. He spent 21 years as vice president and editorial director of UP Media Group, for which he oversaw all editorial and production aspects. He has more than 30 years' experience in the electronics industry, including six years at IPC, an electronics trade association, at which he was a technical projects manager and communications director. He has also held editorial positions at SMT Magazine, community newspapers and in book publishing. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois. Follow Mike on Twitter: @mikebuetow