The small domestic appliance market remains divided in the lead up to Christmas, with the latest GfK Temax Australia report showing that, despite gains in some segments of the category, poorly performing product segments lead to an overall decline in the value of smalls.
In the third quarter of 2013, the category was valued at $423 million, a year-on-year decline of 1.9 per cent. Despite this, small appliances showed the usual expected growth over the year, rising from $377 million in Q1 to $497 million in Q2. This performance came off the back of a strong Christmas season in 2012, when the category saw sales of $526 million for Q4. Overall, the first three quarters of 2013 combined show a slight improvement on 2012, with category value up 0.5 per cent.
According to report author and GfK analyst Gwenno Hopkin, “the performance of individual categories within the SDA [small domestic appliances] sector varies enormously in any given quarter,” and with more than 30 segments in the category, there are winners and losers in the small appliances space:
During quarter 3, vacuum cleaners (29 per cent of the sector’s revenue) experienced another quarter of solid double-digit value growth. The growth was driven by robotic, handsticks and upright cleaners — products that command a significantly higher average price than traditional canister products.
Shavers, food preparation, juicers and well-being also delivered significant value growth. At the other end of the spectrum, however, electric and nonelectric heating, electric blankets, hot beverage makers and kettles all experienced decline. Clearly, the mild winter weather was a significant factor, therefore, in the sector’s overall decline of 1.4 per cent.
Despite this mixed performance, GfK forecasted a strong Christmas for small appliances, along with other key categories in the electrical space.
Another boost in the value of smart-mobile phones, the continued recovery of the consumer electronics sector, and the popularity of tablets and small domestic appliance segments on the run-up to Christmas should lead to a relatively stable performance for the TCG [technical consumer goods] industry in the final quarter. Overall, full-year 2013 results are likely to reflect the trend to-date; that is, a year-on-year value decline of 1 to 2 per cent.