Pro AV Revenues Forecast To Drop $7B In Americas In 2020; But Bounce Back In 2021-22

August 6, 2020 by Dave Haynes

AVIXA, aka the Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association, is forecasting a $7 billion hit to pro AV revenues in the Americas in 2020, dropping 8% from 2019.

The trade association’s new 2020 AV Industry Outlook and Trends Analysis (IOTA) Americas Summary expects revenues to drop from $93B to $86B this year, but rebound in 2021 and be at $95B in 2022. It will be at $108B in 2025.

“AVIXA’s latest forecast was formulated in the first half of 2020 and is based on the assumption that market growth would return in the second half of the year as businesses reopened and resumed purchases of pro AV products,” says Sean Wargo, Senior Director of Market Intelligence, AVIXA. “Our forecasts show that a lot of the pro AV products and services that were already trending upward – servers, digital signage, security, conferencing, and collaboration – will pick up more steam because of the pandemic’s impact.”

AVIXA’s PR continues:

The 8 percent COVID-19-related drop in Americas pro AV revenue in 2020 closely aligns with the global decline of 7.7 percent in 2020. However, the Americas will perform better than the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region, which is set for an 8.9 percent decline. In contrast, the Americas will underperform Asia-Pacific, which will decline by 6.4 percent.

North America accounts for a dominating 87% of Americas regional revenue in 2020 – a share that will largely hold steady through 2025. Although much smaller compared to North America, the South America market will undergo stronger growth, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6% from 2020 through 2025 – compared to 4.5% for North America. Central America & the Caribbean will attain region-leading growth with a 5.8% CAGR.

Not only is the energy and utility market the fastest growing in North America, it’s also the fastest across the entire Americas region with an 8.5 percent CAGR for 2020-2025. Due to the pandemic’s impact on decreasing travel, demand for oil has dropped, however, the market is expected to rise rapidly as economic conditions improve. This will drive investments in smart-city, smart-grid, with heavy digital signage and control room solutions, translating into considerable demand for LED video displays, which will enjoy a 25.6 percent CAGR.

The fastest-growing industry in Central America and the Caribbean is transportation, with revenue rising at a CAGR of 10.4% to reach $331 million in 2025, up from $201.7 million in 2020. Transportation also drives the pro AV industry in South America – the market will grow at an 11% CAGR from 2020-2025, growing from $511.1 million to $863.1 million. This growth is propelled by transportation hubs’ investments in pro AV solutions to increase health and safety measures.  

In the Americas, education will suffer only limited fallout from COVID-19 in 2020, with pro AV revenue declining by 2.7 percent – and a 4 percent rebound expected for 2021. Given the unknown nature of COVID-19 and the uncertainty around the timing of a vaccine, schools and colleges will continue to invest in remote learning solutions including updates to classrooms in support of livestreaming. This will not only drive software as a service (SaaS)-based distance-learning solutions but investment in remote teaching aid software, connectivity, and cloud and managed services as well.

Media and entertainment is another market that stands out with a moderate 5.7 percent decline in 2020, followed by a strong 7.4 percent rebound in 2021. In the COVID era when people are staying at home, the consumption of digital content from mobile apps to TV and gaming has risen sharply – driving demand for associated equipment. The demand for digital entertainment and business content is expected to increase substantially during the forecast years, giving rise to production, storage, and distribution equipment, software, and services.

Although it will generate only a mild CAGR of 2.3 percent from 2020-2025, conferencing and collaboration will remain the top solution bundle in the Americas. Increased remote working in 2020, along with limited access for installation, will depress the need for on-premise conferencing in the very near term. However, as employees return to work in a limited capacity, AVIXA predicts that there will be even more need for collaboration among on-premise and remote workers. This is expected to push the installations in the second half of 2020. Over the long term, workspace trends moving toward smaller, more flexible spaces and more remote working will help to sustain growth and keep the conferencing solution in the top spot.

The IOTA report is produced by AVIXA in conjunction with Omdia (formerly IHS Markit), a global research firm with specialty across a number of underlying supply chain markets, many of which overlap with the principal components of the pro AV industry. This specialization provides connections with manufacturers, distributors, integrators, and larger end user firms that provide and consume pro AV products and solutions. This translates into sources of data that are modeled in conjunction with key macroeconomic data to generate the forecasts shown.

I’m surprised the revenue hit is not as bad as one might expect, given everything that’s going on. But as is noted, as awful as the pandemic has been on many sectors, it has raised the importance of AV for things like unified communications, remote work and collaboration, and distance learning.

It has also made a lot of companies who’d already invested in digital signage happy, because they were able to stay on top of rapidly shifting communications needs. At the same time, companies that have put off going digital are wishing they did. Just look at all the paper notices taped to walls, windows and doors to get a sense of the makeshift, generally crappy solutions at their disposal, in the absence of easily changed, highly visible screens.

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