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feature: laundry Coming clean


According to Mintel in April 2019, laundry appliances accounted for 30 per cent of the market, while around 47 per cent of all households reported having purchased a washing machine in the last three years. In our second feature this month, we hear from the major brands to get their perspective on this important sector and give their thoughts on the types of appliances consumers are looking to purchase.


F


or Luke Harding, Head of Electrical Retail at AEG UK, the market is


moving towards higher spec machines. “The premium laundry appliance market has grown year on year, a testament to the fact that consumers are trading up to products with higher specifications and better technologies.” Keval Shah, Head of Marketing at Beko plc,


agrees that higher end machines are making headway, and highlights efficiency and quieter models as key drivers. “A+++ washing machines are becoming increasingly popular as families look for new ways to save money on energy bills. People are also looking for quieter models as a result of open-plan kitchens becoming more popular. We’re now seeing broken-plan kitchens too, with designated areas for play, cooking, socialising and laundry. Wherever the appliance is, noise level is always important and given the choice, it comes as no surprise that people are opting for quieter appliances.” Catherine Balderson, Senior Hotpoint Brand


Manager, sees growth in the freestanding and larger capacity markets. “Freestanding appliances are continuing to drive sales within the laundry category, with sales of built-in models declining by two per cent in value terms. “Consumers are also buying into the advantage of larger capacity laundry appliances, allowing them to wash bigger loads, less frequently and therefore more economically. Market analysis has found that washing machines with a 10 kg capacity have seen a 71 per cent increase in value growth, whereas models with a 7 kg capacity have seen a 10 per cent decrease in value growth.” Marco Falaschetti, Marketing Director at


Whirlpool, underlines the importance of the laundry sector to the MDA market and echoes Catherine Balderson’s point about larger capacity appliances. “Laundry appliances, specifically


washing machines, remain instrumental in driving the overall value and volume growth of the entire major domestic appliance market. The home laundry market has recently seen a seven per cent increase in volume growth and a five per cent increase in value growth of washing machines, with consumers favouring models with larger drum capacities”. So what factors are driving this important


market? Luke Harding cites consumer interest in sustainability and longevity. “Consumers are increasingly considering laundry to be more than just washing and drying of their clothes. There is a genuine interest in caring for your clothes, whether it be a special outfit or your everyday pair of jeans. As such, they are willing to pay slightly more for appliances that give them the best results wash after wash. The latest AEG laundry range is fitted with some world- first technologies and specialised programmes, allowing you to get the best out of your


22 | www.innovativeelectricalretailing.co.uk


appliance, while caring for the fabric, colours and textures of your clothes. “There is also an increased focus on sustainability. Thanks to a variety of innovations in technology and products, lower temperature washing and more energy-efficient appliances are now becoming the norm. Our AEG washing machines have an exceptionally-high energy rating of A+++ and are packed with energy saving technologies. Available on select models, our ProSense technology automatically measures each load to provide a tailored, precisely-timed wash for your clothes. This ensures that the appliance is only using the amount of energy and water that it needs.” Steve Macdonald, business director,


freestanding appliances, Hoover Candy UK agrees that sustainability is important but also picks out reliability. “Having reliable laundry appliances is considered essential by most consumers, as reflected by the fact that 63 per


October/November 2019


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