Philips departure “sad, but not unexpected”

By James Wells

SYDNEY: The consumer electronics industry has reacted to the departure of Philips from the local AV market with most executives disappointed but not surprised to see another brand leave the market.

Several executives who compete with Philips in the flat panel television and audio products categories said it was unfortunate to see another major brand leave the market.

“It is sad, but not unexpected. I can’t say it is a surprise,” said the head of one consumer electronics supplier, who declined to be identified.

“Philips has been in the firing line and everyone knows they have been struggling for some time. It really was only a matter of time.”

The flat panel TV market is dominated by the ‘big four brands’ – Sony, Samsung, Panasonic and LG with roughly 15-25 per cent market each, providing a small share for the remaining brands in the category such as Sharp, Pioneer, Toshiba and NEC.

“If you look at the GfK statistics, the top four brands in television have gone from representing 60 per cent of the market, to now almost 80 per cent of the market. We are looking down the barrel of having four or five brands in the market propped up with entry point and house brands – is that good for our industry?” another executive said.

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