Robert Heise

Executive VP & General Manager | GDS Global Display
Robert Heise

Impact of COVID-19 on Industrial and Commercial LCD Display Markets

Review of COVID-19 timeline with respect to impacts on supply chains – supply dried up

  • Impact on China and Asian supply chains – how it cascaded across sub-tier suppliers starting with CNY
  • Maybe a nod to the fact that everyone has been consolidating their supply chains in China
  • How COVID impacted personnel and factories due to travel restrictions and infection prevention
    • Can’t build from home
  • Market impacts – graph or animation of country shutdowns and impact on just every market –

Review of COVID-19 timeline with respect to impacts on markets – demand dried up

Impact on digital signage – look at retail, digital advertising and QSR

  • With shops and restaurants closed, businesses delayed any investments in digital signage
  • With stay-at-home orders, advertising dried up, advertisers had no need to install new displays
  • Show data on food traffic, closures, by country
  • Pivot by some integrators to develop COVID applications – temp and dispenser kiosks – face mask photo booths

Impact on Medical – compare to most other industrial segments that were also hard hit

  • Struggle to increase manufacturing for medical customers due to supply chain issues, forced mainly by sub-tiers
  • Graph of global ventilator demand increasing starting in Jan and spiking in March, planned to return back to normal in October.


  • Concern of concentrating all supply chain in one country
  • Need to have multiple approved component sources from multiple continents
  • Need to identify impacts to particular industry and move quickly to find opportunities

Robert Heise is Executive Vice President and General Manager for Global Display Solutions, a global manufacturer of custom digital signage displays used both indoors and outdoors.

Robert has been involved in the display electronics industry for over 30 years and has watched the evolution of digital signage in both technology and application. A technologist at heart, Robert enjoys talking about innovative solutions to the various challenges that are faced in the industry as well as the evolution of technology that is driving those solutions.

As a public speaker, he has presented on both technical and non-technical topics related to the signage industry on a variety of platforms and stages and was recently part of a panel at DSE discussing the future of display technology.

Robert lives in the West suburbs of Chicago with his wife, Sue. He is an avid football fan and loves watching the Wisconsin Badgers and Green Bay Packers play whenever he can.