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Cabling market beginning to rise

By Donna Donnawitz
July 20, 2012
While wire and cable systems are foundational to the IT revolution taking place in many industries, the past few years have not seen much in the way of success in the industry, a recent IBISWorld study found. However, the sector is showing considerable potential moving forward.

While businesses have generally recognized the potential gains offered by advanced cabling solutions, the economic downturn forced the market to slow as organizations were not spending heavily on innovation, the report said. During the five years leading up to 2012, the cable and wire industry experienced an annualized decline of approximately 1.8 percent. The issues leading to the market's slide included a generally weak economy, a major decline in construction spending and minimal activity in the corporate investment and industrial sectors.

While the past few years have been difficult for cabling sales, particularly in 2009, when revenues fell 22.7 percent, the study found most of these losses can be attributed directly to the economic downturn. With recovery beginning and companies attempting to use technology as a foundation for growth, IBISWorld anticipates the market will experience approximately 2.5 percent growth in 2012. The sector will likely continue this expansion for the next five years.

IBISWorld industry analyst Justin Waterman explained poor construction activity was among the greatest contributors to poor cabling spending during the economic downturn and echoes that the cabling sector is showing potential moving forward.

"In the early part of the five years to 2012, decreasing domestic demand and increasing pricing pressure from imports dampened domestic sales," said Waterman. "Demand for industry products was hurt by sluggish investment from telephone companies and electric utilities, a slow US industrial sector and a sharp decline in home construction activity, including a 38.8% decline in 2009."

As companies consider increasing their investments in cabling systems, they have to evaluate how to most cost-effectively deploy new solutions. In some cases, optical solutions are essential to supporting operational goals, but an entirely optical network may not be cost-effective. Fiber-to-Ethernet media conversion tools can enable organizations to use fiber-optic cabling where necessary but seamlessly implement copper when fiber is not needed, allowing for better cost control. Media conversion tools can also enable better network management under some circumstances, allowing for quality of service routing and other advanced functions.

Perle has an extensive range of Managed and Unmanaged Fiber Media Converters to extended copper-based Ethernet equipment over a fiber optic link, multimode to multimode and multimode to single mode fiber up to 160km.


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