Progressing European market for PCB assembly

24 Jan, 2022

By ren

Europe has a long history of producing printed circuit boards. They have firmly established themselves in this industry nowadays. Some of these companies partnered with China, resulting in significant investment and advancement in PCB manufacture. Others make semiconductor substrates for computers, phones, portable music players, and cameras, among other things. Some of these PCB manufacturer boards can also be used in medical, automobile, industrial, and aerospace.

What is PCB?

The basic component of today's electronic gadgets is the printed circuit board. It acts as a foundation for the assembly of various electrical components. PCBs sustain and link the components of electrical devices mechanically and electrically.

PCBs contain both electrical and mechanical properties that make them a good choice. Today's PCBs are stiff, with rigid boards accounting for over 90% of all PCBs. Although certain PCBs are flexible, they only account for 10% of all PCBs on the market. Because of their advantages, PCBs are suitable for a wide range of current electronic equipment. They are lightweight and have a low production cost, making them an excellent choice.

If a PCB includes three or more layers of copper foil that are isolated from each other and linked together to create a single component, it is termed Multilayer PCB manufacturing. A Multilayer Printed circuit board does have an Inner Layer Central in the middle of all the layers, which is covered with a copper layer on both ends and is insulated by layers of prepreg.

Design of PCB

Because PCBs exist in a range of shapes and sizes, it's crucial to know how they're made. When designing PCB boards, some important factors to consider are:

1.   The PCB's intended use 

2.  Required installation space and setup

3.    The PCB's flexibility

4.  Setup and configuration

Manufacturability, production time, product yield, operating costs, and lead times are all impacted by choosing the correct PCB design to meet these requirements.

Printed Circuit Board fabrication

The PCB fabrication business is a key supplier to the majority of European system makers, end-users, and electronic assemblers. They will all benefit directly from this effort since they will be able to source circuit board assembly at more reasonable pricing.

Around 300,000 people work in the European Union designing and assembling electronics. Due to increased competition from low-cost companies that don't always adhere to the same environmental and labor norms as the rest of Europe, Europe's electronics sector has recently discovered ways to adapt. As a result, the European Union has seen a significant drop in the production of low-cost, high-volume electronic items.

Because a substantial portion of the prior market relocated, there was a knock-on impact throughout the supply chain. This comprises industries that work with PCB production and assembly, as well as the supply networks that support them.

The focus of the electronic industry in Europe

In Europe, the electronic sector is currently concentrating on highly specialized non-consumer applications. Here you'll find high-value, low-volume items as well as those manufactured using cutting-edge technology. Typical applications include aerospace, telecommunications, medical, automotive, and a variety of other sectors.

These goods generally need something that isn't typical of high-volume consumer electronics. They are frequently needed to have high-performance dependability and a longer lifespan.

The solderable finish used during circuit board fabrication has a significant impact on these aspects. The capacity to fabricate PCBs in the EU is viewed as a critical component of the supply chain for the high-value, high-reliability electronics sector. This is dependent on its capacity to reliably get high-quality PCB goods, as well as simple communication and quick supply chain dynamics offered by local enterprises.

Past of PCB manufacturing in Europe

The printed circuit board is, without a doubt, at the core of any electronic device. This is because it links the various components and guarantees that the electrical equipment functions properly.

Unfortunately, it is also recognized as the most expensive component, and when an ABC analysis is required, it is normally examined first. Early on, the PCB EU sector had to look for cost-effective manufacturing methods. Many years ago, the lowest scrap rates ever were almost always associated with highly streamlined operations. However, this was insufficient for identifying and qualifying certain procurement officials from "low-cost nations."

As a result, it should unsurprising that the number of PCB board producers in Europe has decreased. This was a reduction from over 1,400 to around 230.

Following a recent analysis of the European PCB business, Data4PCB determined that the remaining PCB manufacturers not only have the right to exist and the chance to survive but are also vital to Europe's electronic industry. Switzerland, Austria, and Germany account for 61% of all PCB manufacture in Europe. Italy comes in second with 11%, France comes in third with 8.5 percent, and the United Kingdom comes in third with 8.2 percent.

These nations' various technologies are dedicated to and focused on the industrial sectors in their respective areas. This has a big impact on future developments. Aside from this, there are additional factors that hinder employment from being transferred to low-cost countries. Small quantities and know-how preservation are two of these causes. Every year, an annual study of the European PCB manufacturer sector is done. This is based on a well-established database accumulated over the previous three decades. It also includes practically all European PCB manufacturers.

Future of European PCB market

The European PCB manufacturing industry was valued at USD 1913.1 million in 2019, and it is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 1.53 percent to USD 2020.9 million by 2025. (2020 - 2025). The printed circuit board (PCB) sector has grown rapidly in recent years, owing to the continued development of consumer electronics gadgets and the growing demand for PCBs in all electronics and electrical equipment.

1.   The Internet of Things (IoT) is opening up new prospects for the consumer electronics industry and wearable device producers, such as smartwatches with embedded processors and flexible PCB sensors. A breakthrough in the design and manufacture of these devices might have a significant influence on the PCB industry. Over the last decade, the number of systems linked to the internet in the region has increased.

2.   Europe accounts for about 40% of the worldwide IoT market, with around 20 billion connections expected by 2020, including roughly 6 billion in Europe. By 2020, Europe is estimated to account for more than a third of worldwide Industrial IoT investments, with the market growing at an exceptional annual pace of more than 22%, hitting a value of EUR 287 billion in 2020. Industrial IoT's biggest IoT market (CBI, Ministry of Foreign Affairs).

3.   The current knowledge of multiple sectors during the region's lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic has shown manufacturers the importance of being able to conduct operations remotely, regardless of where their employees are located, and maintaining continuous interaction with clients and distributors. After the lockdown expires, this knowledge is anticipated to fuel demand for PCBs.

The vehicle industry is anticipated to Hold Significant Market Share

The adoption of many technologies, such as ADAS systems, is driving the market need for PCBs in the European automotive sector. The European Union's institutions have been engaged in advancing ADAS policy and research for the past decade.

1.  Furthermore, as per the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), electric car registrations in Europe increased by 57.4% in the first quarter of 2020. Electric cars, which mostly consist of motor controller circuitry constructed on PCBs, are projected to boost demand in the foreseeable future.

2.   In addition, some industry incumbents are creating strategic collaborations to include UWB technology, which will have a beneficial influence on PCB demand growth. NXP Semiconductors N.V. and Volkswagen, for example, cooperated in August 2019 to adopt Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technology and further research its potential uses. The firms demonstrated the advantages of Ultra-Wideband for improving vehicle security, safety, and convenience in a Volkswagen concept car.

The medical sector is expected to have a boom for the use of PCB

With sophisticated inventions in the healthcare field (Surgery, Pediatrics, Radiology, Dentistry, Optometry, etc), such as wearables, board cameras, and blood pressure monitors, the PCBs utilized in their circuitry assist by providing reliable data for diagnosis, patient health stats, and keeping up with health progress or growing health concerns.


In Conclusion, PCBs have a long history in Europe. They've made a name for themselves in the industry these days. Some of these businesses formed alliances with other firms, resulting in considerable investment and improvement in PCB manufacturing. Others, among other things, create semiconductor substrates for computers, phones, portable music players, and cameras. Many people are on the lookout for cheap PCB prototypes. PCB producers and consumers also want to know how much a PCB costs. The boards from some of these PCB Europe brands can also be utilized in medical, automotive, industrial, and aerospace applications.


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