Germany: strong technical consumer goods market in the second quarter of 2014


In the first half of 2014, the TCG market showed an increase of 2.6 percent with a turnover of almost €26.5 billion, compared to the previous year. This positive development was reinforced in the second quarter with growth of 5 percent. The Information technology market turned out to be the strongest growth driver.

According to GfK Temax, the German market for technical consumer goods gained further momentum in the second quarter of 2014 and increased by 5 percent, compared to the same period last year. The surveyed sectors generated a turnover of €12.9 billion in Q2. The Information technology sector was the main driver for this positive development. However, the dynamics in the major domestic appliances sector, which was already strong in Q1, were also remarkable. The telecommunications sector, on the other hand, showed negative development in this quarter for the first time since the financial crisis in 2009.

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Information technology: strong dynamics in this sector
In the second quarter of 2014, the German market for Information technology was the most dynamic one among the surveyed sectors and achieved a turnover of just under €4.6 billion. This corresponds to an increase of 14.1 percent, compared to the previous year. For the first half of 2014, this resulted in growth of 7.9 percent and total turnover amounted to nearly €9.4 billion. This positive trend can be attributed mostly to the very strong computing market. The strongest-growing segments were ultra-mobile and ultra-thin devices, as well as computing tablets. Mediatablets, with positive, albeit decreasing growth, contributed to the strong half-yearly result in the Information technology sector.

Major domestic appliances: the kitchen is driving the market
The market for major domestic appliances continued its strong performance in the second half of 2014, with an increase of 3.7 percent and a turnover of almost €2 billion. Thus, in the first half of 2014, a turnover of more than €4 billion was generated. Dishwashers and cooling devices continued to perform to a high level. For the cooling devices, especially comfort functions like energy efficiency and No-Frost boosted sales. Cooking and baking products gave a further boost to the major domestic appliances market. In addition to stoves, ovens and hobs, positive news also came from the hoods segment which achieved higher average prices due to the growth of a lifestyle centering on the kitchen.

Office equipment and consumables: turnover increased in Q2
In the second quarter of 2014, turnover in the market for Office equipment and consumables increased by 3.6 percent to nearly €1.2 billion, compared to last year. This confirmed the good performance noted in the first quarter. The first half of 2014 showed growth of 3.1 percent to more than €2.4 billion. Data and video projectors experienced the most dynamic turnover growth which was increased due to the FIFA World Cup. In the otherwise weak printer market, business ink multifunctional devices gave a positive impulse to the market, while in the laser printers segment, demand was high for compact color multifunctional devices.

Small domestic appliances: positive turnaround
In the market for small domestic appliances, growth of 2.6 percent was achieved in Q2 2014, compared to the same period in 2013. This corresponds to a turnover of €769 million. Thus, the negative trend in the first quarter was more than compensated for, and growth was at 0.7 percent for the first half of 2014. In the course of the year, kitchen appliances, liquidizers, hand blenders, kitchen machines, as well as deep fryers – in particular, appliances with low oil consumption – experienced a strong surge in demand. By contrast, the performance of coffee and espresso machines continued to decline. In the household segment, handheld vacuum cleaners – operated with rechargeable batteries – as well as electric toothbrushes gained momentum.

Consumer electronics: boost for TVs
In the Consumer electronics sector, €1.9 billion was generated in Q2 2014. This corresponds to a growth rate of 2.5 percent. However, development in the first half of 2014 remained negative. June 2014 showed the strongest growth momentum when demand for TVs increased significantly. Growth in sales of Smart TV models and Ultra HD devices was particularly dynamic. However, this positive move was accompanied by a considerable decline in average prices. Moreover, action camcorders were an increasingly interesting segment with substantial growth. In particular, due to the high-end equipment with 4K video resolution, smartphone control, Wi-Fi and GPS, these devices are regarded as highly innovative and are a magnet for the lifestyle-oriented target groups.

Telecommunications: decline for smartphones
In the second quarter of 2014, the telecommunications market experienced negative growth for the first time since 2009, achieving 0.7 percent less turnover than in the same period last year. This corresponded to slightly more than €2 billion. As a result, in the first half of 2014, the positive development slowed down to 1.3 percent growth. This is the first time that a negative trend also affected the smartphones segment which had been the main growth driver in the telecommunications sector until then. In addition, landline telephone systems reported a performance below the level of the previous year.

Photography*: strong only in niche products
The photography sector registered a turnover of €457 million in Q2 2014. This corresponded to a decline of 21 percent, compared to last year. The decline noted in the first quarter of 2014 continued. A bright spot, however, are the compact system cameras which, in combination with their lenses, showed significant growth and almost doubled their share of the photography market. At the same time, positive tendencies were observed in high-end niche markets like SLR full-format cameras and fixed-lens cameras with big sensors. Turnover for digital SLR and fixed-lens cameras declined.
*Photography includes digital cameras and photo accessories