Week 47, 2009

According to the latest update of Eurosmart figures, the industry will have delivered 5.14 billion cards in 2009, a 5.1% growth vs. 2008, and expects to deliver 5.455 billion cards in 2010, a 9.9% growth vs. 2009. We do believe many industries would be more than happy with figures like ours, but we all remember the 20% to 30% yearly growth we were enjoying a few years ago. However, some of the speakers insisted on the fact the price wars are making a reappearing, and ASPs (Average Selling Prices) are shrinking. Many anticipate that in spite of the volume growth, sales level from some players might be down in 2008.

There is a common agreement our industry positioning is to deliver “Security, Privacy, Trust and Convenience”. And Eurosmart reaffirms its vision: “20 billion intelligent objects in 2020”

But innovation always takes longer than we anticipate to be implemented and to become a reality on a mass market.  When asked about the major trends for 2010, heads of the largest companies in our industry answered: NFC, M2M, internet of things, more EMV and contactless in banking, development of eID and eGovernment, … Or more of the same, as the same list has been on for a few years. So this is not where the innovation is. Most of the innovation may come from the geographical split. BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) countries represent more than half of the world population. Besides the run from the mobile communication industry to catch the next billion subscribers, applications in Kenya, Uganda, Colombia, Taiwan, … are now considered as examples to follow for the rest of the world.

So, is the plan for 2010 “same technologies, same products, more geographies”

Thierry Spanjaard

Chief Editor

Smart Insights