The global electronics industry is in rude health, according to GfK data for the first six months of 2019. Simon King reports.

Despite the challenges of global trade and retailing, the industry is reporting category growth across the main segments of TV, major domestic appliances (MDA), small domestic appliances (SDA) and audio. In the first half of 2019, premium

features in TV sets kept increasing their sales share, according to Markus Kick, GfK’s Global Strategic Insights Manager for Consumer Electronics. “A

year-on-year increase of 15

per cent led to almost every other sold TV sporting 4K resolution. The OLED display technology witnessed increasing market penetration in the first half year of 2019 as well, with up to 10 per cent turnover share in Europe and robust growth rates around the globe.” In the first six months of 2019, Mr Kick said that upscale TV technologies kept trickling down in lower price tiers, making, for example, smart 4K TVs more affordable to mass market consumers amid increasing competitive pressure. “While in 2016 around 30 brands

were selling TVs with 4K resolution, more

than 70 brands have this

technology on offer in 2019,” Mr Kick said.

A sterling performance in MDA

In domestic appliances, the important workhorse categories of laundry and refrigeration both traded well in the first six months of 2019.

Norbert Herzog, GfK’s Global Strategic Insights Manager, MDA, said: “In the first half of the year, there was overall value growth of 3.2 per cent in the washing machines category. “Performance and capacity are long-term drivers in all major markets. This translates into increasingly larger loading capacities in washing machines. As an example, washing machines with 9kg or more capacity grew by 23 per cent globally. “The trend towards steam- supported washing machines grow globally by 64 per cent in the first six months of 2019. Fewer wrinkles,

represents about 10 per cent of the current market, there is still room for further growth.”

Driving the SDA category Vacuum cleaners remain the biggest

growth driver within SDAs, accounting for almost a quarter of the total SDA market growth.

Nevin Francis, GfK’s Global Strategic Insights Manager, SDA, said: “Within vacuum cleaners, the Cordless vacuum cleaner/handstick rechargeable segment owns nearly a

42 per cent share. This segment has side-lined the cylinder vacuum cleaner as the major type followed by highly growing sales of robotic vacuum cleaners. “Sales of cordless vacuum cleaners alone were worth 4.1 billion in 2018. A major chunk of which comes from Western Europe.” Food preparation is the second largest category within SDA, and grew by nine per cent globally in the first six mont hs of 2019. Liquidisers is the key sub-segment, which accounted for 51

less ironing as well as more hygiene and fewer allergens makes steam functionality attractive in 2019.” GfK reported that Wi-Fi and/or NFC smart appliances boosted the market with growth rates of 33 per cent in Western Europe and 89 per cent in South East Asia. Sales in the refrigeration category

were up 1.9 per cent in the first six months of 2019. Mr Herzog said: “The trend towards premium segments and premium design is very evident for refrigerators. The long-term trend towards two, or three-plus door, appliances is continuing. “Appliances with three-plus doors was a growth engine in Europe with more than +20 per cent vs. January to June 2018. As this segment currently

per cent of all food preparation units sold in 2018. Sales grew 17 per cent, in terms of sales units, and 14 per cent, in terms of sales value, in the first six months of 2019.

Sounds good

In audio, headphones and headsets remain the key growth driver in the market for audio devices: from 2015 to 2019, the global turnover more than doubled. From 2018 to 2019, the global turnover grew by another 40 per cent.

In the first half of 2019, in-ear headphones saw a stable sales value growth of 20 per cent and accounted for 65 per cent of the total headphone turnover. In the same period, over-ear headphones saw a stable sales value growth of 27 per cent and accounted for around 35 per cent of the total headphone turnover. Western Europe is the largest market for over-ear headphones. Sales of multiroom devices, which allow consumers to play different music in different rooms, increased by five per cent in the first half of 2019. Mr Kick added: “In the first half of 2019 sales of multiroom devices, with a smart assistant built-in, grew by more than 100 per cent and the average sales price increased by 70 per cent.”


September 2019

Onwards and upwards

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