GPS World's OEM Insights — January 2009
"In all, about six to eight major retailers accounted for the majority of GPS/PND sales last year...."
2008 started out sunny and warm as I remember. We all said goodbye to 2007 and a holiday buying spree that exceeded all expectation. With a new year of windfall profits behind them, GPS manufacturers, their shareholders, analysts and investors were confident 2008 would be even better. There were two types of disasters in 2008, however: no. 1 (self inflicted) was created by poor management, over valuation, and lack of insight. The second disaster can be attributed to the general economic market collapse of 2008In the professional .land use products market, mentioned early, companies suffered setbacks as their main business of productivity solutions targeted the slumping construction, mining ,and utility infrastructure segment. Trimble was seen to tumble in the disaster no. 2 scenario. Although times were tougher, the companies key executives tended to spend a lot of time fine tuning their own compensation packages and stock programs while facing some early heat this year about the reasoning behind the stock repurchase plan, which was used to prop up the stock price. But they know the value of being low key and that accounts for a lot these days.According to a select group industry watchers, times will be tough for the PND. "This PND space is absolutely going in the crapper," said Jeff Evanson, an analyst at Dougherty & Co. Evanson sees several factors leading to a "dramatic slowdown" in PND sales, including a lack of innovation in PND products for holiday season, signs of market saturation, and competition for consumer spending.