There are no shortage of instances where Excel plays a depressingly crucial role in critical LOB operations (including shops that you'd expect to know better). Essentially what happens is places like big manufacturing corps pour all their engineering budget into staffing themselves with folks who have domain-specific knowledge, but no idea how to build something resembling sane IT infrastructure, let alone focus on rolling out anything that could scale. So they all fall back to what they know from school, which are terrible (terrible!) hand-crafted spreadsheets that get passed around through email or thrown on a network store that everyone gets write access to. As in: this is literally how things run at the fab that produced the chips in your phone or the silicon in your big name desktop GPU.
Occasionally, someone comes along who knows how to do pivot tables or use VBA to create basic macros and is revered as a wizard. Even in the best cases they end up being unmaintainable messes.
Heck, a quick and dirty TiddlyWiki-like tool that just lets average people make basic tables would go far in dislodging Excel from places where it's burrowed down and is screaming "wrong tool for the job".