According to new numbers from IMS Research, the year started relatively strongly, ending with a nearly 12 point gain year-to-date over 2010.
“However, fourth quarter’s sales slumped and this is a trend likely to continue rather than be just a seasonal slowdown in the market,” said IMS.
Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) saw faster growing sales in the mid-range to large UPS after being flat in 2010, though favorable currency exchange helped the situation to some extent.
Unfortunately, EMEA’s signs of improvement appear to be short-lived, as problems with economic stability continue and the region slides back into recession.
“Europe’s financial health has been very dependent on the outcome of the European debt crisis. Since there have been no resolutions to the problems and many countries are faced with credit rating downgrades, it is likely that EMEA’s UPS market will contract slightly as a result,” said IMS Research market analyst Lori Lewis.
2012 growth rates for North Ameica are forecast to be soft, as North America’s economy is still a risk despite recent more upbeat news.
According to IMS, Asia’s growth rates outpaced the rest of the market by a convincing margin, but the region has showed signs of slowing down, especially the single-phase segment.
“The low growth in Asia’s fourth quarter is relative only to an extremely strong past two years in the region.” explained Lewis. “We knew Asia’s growth would decelerate a bit towards the end of the year, but we project that the region’s growth will continue to outperform the rest of the market over the next 3-5 years.”