The results of the GfK Temax France on technical consumer goods show that revenue of 6 billion euro was generated in Q2 2014, a fall of 5.5% compared to Q2 2013. Consumer electronics is at last enjoying a positive trend – an increase of 3.2%, compared to Q2 2013. The small domestic appliances sector also recorded higher sales: an increase of 0.1% in Q2 2014. The photography sector continued its decline with a decrease of 22%. The major domestic appliances sector did not match the good performance from Q1 2014 but stabilized its position with a small fall of 0.1%. The Information technology sector ranked second in terms of decreases, with a drop of 16.5%, while the telecommunications sector recorded a more moderate fall (3.8%) than in the previous period.
Let’s see the details of the different sectors.
Major domestic appliances: a steady performance
The MDA market was stable during the second quarter. As in Q1, the universe of freestanding products grew slightly, but this time it was not enough to compensate the more pronounced fall in the built-in products segment. The cooling market – refrigerators, freezers and wine cellars – generated almost 5% growth. On the other hand, tumble dryers declined strongly and hindered the laundry category despite the good performances of dishwashers (both freestanding and built-in). Finally, cooking products confirmed their decline.
Small domestic appliances: contrasting trends
Kitchen machines boosted the food preparation segment with competitive price cuts. The cooking equipment segment grew thanks to the contribution of multi-cookers. Strongly driven by promotions, the coffee machines market grew in volume but not in value. The other segments of the breakfast market didn’t compensate for the losses in value. Men’s shavers and epilators are still struggling – offset by an upward trend in laser/IPL, dental care products and innovation in the hair care market. There was a shift in market trends for vacuum cleaners. The development of rechargeable handstick cleaners did not compensate for the decline of both bagless cylinder cleaners and robotic vacuum cleaners. Irons started to end their decline and the slow fall in sales of generators is balanced by good results for steam irons.
Office equipment and consumables: the decline is slowing down
After a strong fall in Q1 2014, the office equipment and consumables sector is showing positive signs of stability. In fact, turnover reached 650 million euro in Q2 2014, a slight decrease of 1%, compared to Q2 2013. The multifunctional devices segment’s turnover is rising again, mainly due to good results in the laser segment. The dynamism of this market compensates for the decline of consumables (coated paper and cartridges). Finally, sales of video projectors increased in Q2 2014, driven by full HD products.
Consumer electronics: TV and the audio/video market stabilized
Thanks to the FIFA World Cup and summer sales, the market for TVs rose by 11% in value. High-end segments have particularly been affected by the launch of the Ultra HD models. The markets for 3D and large-screen models (equal to or greater than 55 inches) have grown as well. By the end of the year, we may see a drop in Ultra HD TV prices to under 1,000 euro. Besides, there are important disparities in the market with a massive slowdown for home theater systems (down by 37%) on one side, and with growing success for connected hi-fi systems (up by 62% in Q2 2014). During this period, consumers continued to purchase soundbars. However, with growth of 41%, this dynamic market did not offset the decline of other audio/video solutions.
Photography: in a strong declining market, only hybrid cameras stood out
As expected, compact cameras suffered the biggest drop in sales, compared with Q2 2013, losing one-third of their volume. Also, the value of sales fell by 31%. Average prices were stable although prices of entry models decreased more than those for average compact cameras. Premium models better withstood the crisis in the compact cameras segment. With regards to interchangeable lens cameras, a contrast arises between DSLR cameras – which lost 25% of their turnover – and, on the other hand, hybrid cameras which remain the sole growing DSC segment, with an 8% increase in volume, but most importantly a 20% rise in turnover. Hybrid cameras remained the dynamic driver in this sector in the first half of 2014. In 2013, the success of the action cameras segment nearly led the camcorder market to stabilize its volumes, in comparison with the year before. Today, sales of action cameras continue to grow (up 31% in volume) but that growth has slowed, and no longer offsets the slumps in sales of both mini-motion cameras and traditional cameras (down respectively by 47% and 30% in terms of volume). Now, one in every two camcorders sold is an action camera – a ratio which should increase during New Year celebrations.
Telecommunications: less dynamism, yet Sim-Free continued its dominance
The telecommunications sector is less dynamic this year. Feature phones lost half of their turnover and sales fell by 10%. Sim-Free mobile phones (those without any subscription) continued to drive the smartphones market accounting for 77% of sales at the end of June through retail channels. This is an increase of 17%, compared to the same period of last year.
Information technology: the downward trend continued
After a gloomy first quarter, the market continued to decline, due to a fall in the turnover of its main segments – including mediatablets – whose volume growth continues to weaken. Indeed, during Q1 2014, a high level of promotions significantly reduced the impact of these sales. However, the decline of the IT hardware market should slow down by the end of the year thanks to growing new segments like PC tablets and ultra-mobile PCs.