Editor’s Note (January 15, 2021): PhotonicsNEXT is now available for on-demand viewing—register here.A lot has happened since last January when Laser Focus World published its Annual Laser Market Review & Forecast for 2020—a comprehensive report on the economic and technology trends that are shaping laser sales globally. We were already navigating through turbulent times. Many of the traditional global economic indicators were pointing to the challenges faced by laser manufacturers such as a manufacturing slowdown, persistent political uncertainty, trade conflicts, and weak business investment. Then, COVID-19 happened. It’s safe to say that the coronavirus outbreak changed everyone’s outlook and plans. And it looks like these changes will continue into early 2021.
For example, in July SPIE announced that Photonics West 2021 would move from January to March. As a result, Laser Focus World's 33rd Annual Lasers & Photonics Marketplace Seminar was rescheduled along with it. After all, the seminar is part of the official Photonics West program and the only executive-level event held in partnership with SPIE. We have also pushed out to the February issue our Annual Laser Market Review & Forecast for 2021, which provides an overview of current worldwide laser markets—from the various technologies to the applications driving revenue growth. The quantitative data included in the article comes from Strategies Unlimited (via Laser Market Research President and Principal Laser Analyst Allen Nogee, under contract to Endeavor Business Media, who also presents a keynote at the seminar).
The review provides the only objective summary of major trends in our industry and includes top-level estimates of current and projected global sales revenue by laser application, as well as trends in those application sectors, which many executives find helpful in capital expense planning and long-term strategic planning. But you don’t have to wait until February. I'd like to personally invite you to take part in an immersive day of learning on January 13th. Dubbed the PhotonicsNEXT Summit, this unique one-day event focused on scientific advances, photonics R&D, and application solutions will also include a brief market update by Allen Nogee to help us understand the impact that COVID-19 is having on the photonics business around the world. So please mark your calendars (go to https://bit.ly/PhotonicsNEXT21) and keep an eye out for more details coming soon!