In the 2015 Appliance Retailer Mid-Year Report published in the July issue, we once again canvassed the industry’s leaders to see how they have weathered the past twelve months and their forecast for the next year.
Betta Home Living CEO Graeme Cunningham who has been at the helm of the Betta brand since 2010, is confident that signs of improved trading will continue for the next twelve months.
How has the first half of 2015 been for your business?
We have experienced a better than expected start to 2015 with improvements across most categories. The first quarter was up overall with Q2 starting a little slower but now trending up. We are predicting the first half will finish ahead of last year, with some categories performing particularly well.
What are your predictions for the second half of the year?
Based on our performance in the first half, we remain positive for the year overall. The recent budget has lifted consumer sentiment, which is good for the economy, and for retail generally. If we factor in the recent interest rate drops, the potential for a further cut, along with our own marketing activities, we believe the second half should show growth over 2014, as consumers become more confident.
What opportunities do you see for the electrical retailing industry?
We are still seeing increased demand for more premium products in key categories. ASPs in some areas are increasing because of this, which is good for the industry. These new product introductions, particularly in the premium segments, provide the industry with the opportunity to attract the discretionary consumer spend.
What threats are currently present in the industry?
If we set aside the external economic factors, I don’t believe the threats have changed too much in the last year. We are still seeing some categories declining in value, so the challenge remains to maintain the revenue in the business. Another ever present challenge for our industry, is attracting the consumer spend from other industries. The strong communication of these new products coming to market through comprehensive marketing campaigns will help achieve this.
What is your favourite product of 2015 so far?
There are a lot of new products that have impressed but not one that stands out on its own. The design and styling of the some of the new cooking products we are seeing , from a couple of our suppliers, is quite striking.