trade update…

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Bennetts, a Norfolk-based leading independent electrical retailer, which employs about 300 staff in 14 stores across the country, including Colchester, Norwich, Martlesham Heath in Suffolk, Bangor and Farnham, has filled for administration.

Electrolux has been recognized by the Ethisphere Institute as one of the companies in the ranking World’s Most Ethical Companies 2011. The ranking names 110 companies in 38 industries that surpass their industry peers.

Gecko Furniture, a TV & AV furniture manufacturer, has expanded its product range. The Reflect and Impro cabinets are now available in a gloss walnut and black finish. The Omega shaped OME1200 TV stand is also available in the gloss walnut finish.

The jury of the International Design Forum (Germany) has awarded the iF Communication Design Award 2011 to Haier for its new LED M300 television series, rewarding the 3D interface of its range of connected LED televisions.

Domestic & General has been selected by LG Electronics UK to provide a comprehensive portfolio of product registration and warranty services. Covering the brand’s home entertainment and home appliances ranges, the five year partnership will further strengthen LG’s service and support operation.

Linsar has introduced a free 5 year guarantee on its current and new range of LED and LCD TVs. All Linsar TVs sold to consumers from 1 March will be covered under this new extended guarantee. TVs with integrated DVD players will feature a 2 year warranty on the DVD player.

Billabong, specialising in sport and entertainment, is launching into 24-hour, on-demand entertainment via BRAVIA Internet Video. The exclusive arrangement will be made available on all Sony BRAVIA Internet Video enabled TVs and Blu-ray players.

Vogel’s THIN 345 wall mount for ultra-thin/LED screens has won a Red Dot Design Award for Product Design 2011.

The independents’ share of the total CE market fell to a record low, reported GfK. It has been less than 20% for the last three months. This is their lowest recorded position. In comparison in February 2010, the independents’ share was over 24% by value.

While the costs of the earthquake and tsunami are still being evaluated in Japan, they had an immediate impact on the consumer electronics industry worldwide. Sony had ceased production at six factories in the industrial Tohoku region of northeastern Japan, while Sharp, Panasonic and Mitsubishi experienced major disruptions to their operations. Sanyo has also experienced shut-downs.

A new report commissioned by Kelkoo, reveals that 2011 will see a squeeze on UK retail spending as household disposable incomes fall by 1.5% or £223 on average this year to £14,649, forcing households to tighten their belts. Although overall consumer retail spending is expected to increase by 1% year-on-year, this is due to rising inflation, and underlying retail sales volumes are forecast to contract in 2011.

According to PwC’s latest UK Economic Outlook report, spending on housing and utility bills has seen a strong increase from around 13% of total household spending in 1963 to around 22% in 2009, and is expected to rise further to over 25% by 2030 as a result of rising relative prices and an ageing population.

Almost half (46.5%) of online shoppers are influenced in their choice of retailer by the delivery service provided, according to research carried out by IMRG and eDigitalResearch.

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