KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
18th January 2019
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Welcome to the
It's been a funny old Christmas, hasn't it, with the lack of sales in our town centres and scaremongering over the ever-growing political uncertainty? It isn't all bad though, with official figures revealing that construction output grew by 2.1% for the period September to November compared with the previous three months, and today's UK kitchen market report by MTW Research (www.marketresearchreports.co.uk) suggesting sales will rise by £50mn in 2019, despite ongoing challenges for the kitchen products industry. Suppliers' data shows that higher value rigid kitchen cabinets, cooking appliances, premium taps and dishwashers are performing exceptionally well, although the mid-market stays squeezed on prices and profits, with online retailers steadily gaining share through aggressive pricing strategies.
The 170-page report identifies top kitchen design trends, noting increased complexity as consumers personalise their kitchens rather than accept traditional off the shelf solutions. Design innovation continues to support the higher value market, with the 'unobtrusive kitchen' also gaining share thanks to increased building of smaller, urban open plan homes.
MTW says sophisticated consumers realise the old binary choice of traditional or modern kitchen design is defunct, with the market more complex regarding design, specification and purchasing criteria... Urban, industrial, chic rustic and vintage designs drive the market and knowledgeable consumers are seeking retailers and manufacturers who can help create a distinctly personalised kitchen. The report identifies several growth opportunities, while warning suppliers they'll suffer if they're slow to identify new trends and underestimate the growing threat of price deflation.
Based on data from companies reporting over £180 million profit, the report finds that the 'connected kitchen' is driving value growth in the luxury and high-mid markets, with smart extractors, voice activated hobs and built in cabinet smart speakers demonstrating how retailers are using technology to personalise kitchen designs.
The report also identifies a shift in distribution, with retailers have mostly won the battle against the Sheds, which are repositioning to more traditional DIY market positions. Growth in the lower value sector is likely to be elusive in 2019, forcing online and DIY channels to engage in price battles, while lower mass market growth is likely to be compounded by the 'kitchen refresh', with cost-conscious consumers changing doors, handles and taps rather than undertaking full refits.
Happy New Year to you!
11th January 2019