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CE & Appliance Disties Facing Coronavirus Problems

The cashflow of several distributors supplying the consumer electronics and appliance industry in Australia are set to be hit, with many facing a struggle to get access to new stock in coming weeks due to the Coronavirus.

Blaupunkt 100% Made in China German licensed brand name only.

This is set to have a knock-on effect for retailers who will also face problems according to analysts in China.

Brands such as Blaupunkt TV’s,Esato and Teko as well as the Harvey Norman owned brand Ariston and Smart Barbecue are facing supply problems as the bulk of these products are made in China where factories are struggling to get back to full production, some factories are still closed.

Demand for TV and handset panels is also expected to take a hit from the coronavirus outbreak, with prices for 2020 TV’s set to rise as manufacturers struggle to get access to both panels and components.

“All it takes is a 20-cent component and a production line can stop” said one supplier.

According to DigiTimes factories will not have a “full grasp of the outbreak’s impact” until the second half of March or April, judging from the current supply chain slowdown.

The outbreak is also affecting demand for small- to medium-size display panels used in smartphones and tablets.

Chinese handset brands have already moved to delay the launch of new models for 2020 and will also slow down their push for 5G phones reducing their panel demand, said the sources.

Australia’s handset market will take a major hit in the first half of the year before becoming relatively steady in the second half said one Chinese supplier.

Digitimes Research has revised downward the combined smartphone shipments of the top-four Chinese vendors – Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi – for the first quarter to 88.2 million units, down 11% from its previous forecast of 99.1 million units.

China-based panel makers BOE Technology, Tianma Microelectronics and China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) all have plants in Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, and they have been unable resume normal operations.

TV Brands such as JVC, Eco, Blaupunkt and major brands such as Hisense Sony, LG and Samsung rely on these factories.

Among the worst hit is CSOT its 6G LTPS TFT LCD fab plant is estimated to be running at only 30% of its capacity due to serious labor shortages.

DigiTimes said that this will significantly undermine the firm’s shipments to clients as the plant now account for 10% of global LTPS LCD production capacity, although the company has managed to mitigate impacts of traffic controls on transportation of raw materials and finished products.

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