GfK analysis of UK retail durables sectors

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According to the latest GfK report, April 2013 saw the total durables market remain in negative territory, declining nearly 3% compared to the same month last year.

The biggest decline was in the consumer electronics sector, where value tumbled nearly 26% compared to April last year. The digital switchover in the London region and the run up to the Olympics were significant boosters for the sector last year and direct comparisons over the next couple of months may be difficult.

There is growth to be had in the non-replacement led areas such as media tablets and accessories, however these significant market boosting innovations tend to be few and far between at the moment.

According to GfK, those wishing to grow at times of overall decline need to have online presence – internet sales value grew nearly 15% compared to April last year and have remained positive for the last 12 consecutive monthly comparison periods.

In the televisions product category, whilst there are areas of growth (such as jumbo screen sizes) it remains largely a replacement market due to little innovation taking place. Compared to April 2012, the value attributable to televisions declined 26%. Over the last 12 months, this key part of the consumer electronics sector has declined 15% compared to the previous 12 months.

The largest value contributor to the major domestic appliances sector, washing machines, sees a decline of 4% month on month, whilst the next biggest categories, cooking and cooling, both see growth of 4% on the same comparison period.

In the personal care segment, shavers and hair dryers decline 15% and 2% respectively month on month. In the kitchen segment, there is better news as the value attributable to hot beverages makers surges 29% compared to April last year. 

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