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Avionics industry sees a surge in forward-fit sales
Sales worth $823m in 2Q23 mark the highest quarterly volume in the history of the Avionics Market Report. This shows a recent surge in forward-fit sales with more modest growth in the retrofit market.

The Aircraft Electronics Association has released its second quarter 2023 Avionics Market Report. In the first six months of the year, total worldwide business and general aviation avionics sales amounted to $1,601,414,712.48, or more than $1.6 billion, as reported by the participating companies.

Second quarter sales increased 5.9 per cent sequentially from the first quarter of 2023. During April, May and June, sales increased 16.2 per cent compared to the same time one year ago. With more than $823 million in sales during the second quarter, it marked the highest quarterly sales volume in the history of the report.

The figure represented a 19.2 per cent increase in total sales compared to the first six months of 2022, which was driven by a 31.7 per cent increase in forward-fit sales compared to the same time one year ago.

Also of note, the industry garnered the largest quarterly forward-fit sales volume in the history of the report with more than $490 million in avionics sales to OEMs. It is only the third time that quarterly forward-fit sales topped $400 million.

The dollar amount reported, using the net sales price rather than the manufacturer's suggested retail price, includes: all business and general aviation aircraft electronic sales, including all component and accessories in cockpit/cabin/software upgrades/portables/certified and non-certified aircraft electronics; all hardware (tip to tail); batteries; and chargeable product upgrades from the participating manufacturers. The amount does not include repairs and overhauls, extended warranty or subscription services.

Of the more than $1.6 billion in sales during the first six months of 2023, 40.2 per cent came from the retrofit market, namely avionics equipment installed after original production, while forward-fit sales, namely avionics equipment installed by airframe manufacturers during original production, amounted to 59.8 per cent of first-quarter sales.

According to the companies that separated their total sales figures between the US and Canada versus other international markets, 72.9 per cent of the sales volume in the first six months of 2023 occurred in North America.

"This quarterly report makes clear that the industry is seeing a recent surge in forward-fit sales, which has topped more than $400 million in three of the past four quarters," says AEA president and CEO Mike Adamson. "The retrofit market appears to have more modest growth with a 4.5 per cent year-over-year increase in sales."

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