Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Basler Stock Skyrockets

Germany-based machine vision and industrial camera maker Basler stock market value more than triples since the beginning of 2017. The company earning reports reveal a surge in its imaging business:

"The strong demand is mainly due to high investments in the electronics industry in Asia along with a widely spread upswing in the market. Furthermore, bottle necks in materials and production led to increasing delivery times and these to early order placements."

"In a very dynamic market environment, Basler AG closed the first half-year of 2017 with new record values in incoming orders and sales. For the first six months of 2017, the VDMA (Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau, German engineering association) reported the strongest growth for image processing components since 15 years. For German manufacturers of image processing components this meant an order growth by 47 % and a sales growth by 43 % - in the same period Basler's incoming orders grew by 100 % and sales by 62 %.

Thanks to JK for the link!

Update: Here is the English version of the stock price:


  1. Germany based company - Germany based stock - German language based stock report diagrams. :-)

  2. so what? if the diagrams are copied from a german based website? there are for sure english company reports for Basler available.

    by the way... its still incredible how much money the industrial camera companies are able to get for adding a power supply and interface to a CMOS Sensor. I ask myself for years when will there be a consolidation? There are so many camera manufacturers that offer basically the same. It is surprisingly easy to design your own camera and let a electronic manufacturer/EMS company solder and assemble it. The number of cameras per year to break even is surprisingly low. Especially when it comes to higher bandwidth the price difference is huge. The price for the BOM of a Coaxpress camera is not higher than for USB3 - nevertheless the price the camera companies ask for is maybe 2-3x, and still they get it.

    1. Don't forget that this also includes technical support, any firmware/HW issues or (eventual) upgrades, etc. These are not cheap!

    2. dont forget the exhibition booths, high definition marketing videos, websites and catalogues, administrative overhead (every camera manufacturer has), the sales guys and senior vice presidents that you pay with every camera. You also pay for a lot of features you dont need. You pay a 'marketing pricepoint' sometimes, especially in high performance cameras. Coaxpress is an example as I said, the BOM is about the same than USB3, the price of the camera is about 2-3x.

      According to game theory there are 3 players in a mature market. In industrial cameras there are not 3 but hundreds of companies, some with 'skyrocket stocks' and that basically offer the same. If you have demand for a few 100 cameras per year and not too much variation/models it pays, especially if you are a machine builder with a electronics development know how for other components (where you have similar firmware/hw issues to handle). For the complex problems you can buy ip cores, and the complex problem in a camera is the cmos Sensor that you anyhow buy.
      Additionaly you can design in ideas that you cannot buy off the shelf, sometimes this helps differentiating your product from competitors that buy off the shelf ;-)

    3. Maybe for small 'end-user' companies, but for large companies where camera is just one part of a complex system, what matters are product supply chain assurances, product control, assurance of specifications (including tolerances), IP issues, etc. So indeed for small businesses, one can develop cameras from sourcing image sensors, but for large companies (who are the target market base for such camera manufacturers) are not bothered and are happy to buy whats available in the market.

    4. well... according to their 2016 financial report they produced 259k cameras in 2016 with 457 FTE equivalent employees - which means they produce 566 cameras per employee - plus they are highly profitable. You see my problem? Basler is above average I think because they concentrate on lower cost cameras. Revenue was 97M, so about 350 per camera. We anyhow need to adress the imaging topics, integrate it into software etc. We have a really small team that also does other topics. I would guess we do about 1500 cameras per camera related FTE

    5. its quite interesting to read the annual report of Basler


      like page 50: divide costs by camera number. Sales and marketing costs 65€/camera. General administration costs 44€/camera. earnings of 44€/camera - so about 153€ on top of every BOM (and Basler might be quite good relative to its peers)

      I wonder how this is possible. Maybe one or the most important reason is the lock in effect with proprietary tools that makes them hard to replace. Once it works nobody touches it again and they stay in until the next generation of machine. And its similar in all industrial electronicts. Go go a large exhibition like sps/ipc/drives in N├╝rnberg and be astonished how manys hundreds of relatively small companies all offer more or less the same. Will we see a real consolidaton in industrial electronics? I doubt for the next years.


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