Consumer appliances – ACs, refrigerators, washing machines, microwave ovens – registered an impressive sales growth in India, during Oct-Dec, last year, according to GfK (India), a leading data and analytics firm. The said quarter is also the best performing quarter since 2018, in terms of the number of appliances sold.
The observations are based on GfK POS data, Q4’2020, for offline and online retail. The data provides optimistic projections for larger appliances. In terms of units sold, air conditioners rose 49 percent, refrigerators 25 percent, microwave ovens 49 percent, and washing machines 31 percent. Smartphones sold 8 percent more, compared to Q4 in the preceding year. TVs (PTV/flat) grew 8 percent.
The change observed in terms of value for products is air conditioners 49 percent, refrigerators 24 percent, microwave ovens 51 percent, washing machines 29 percent. Smartphones registered 17 percent, PTV/flat category saw 7 percent growth.
The year, marked by the pandemic, affected several core businesses. However, during the lockdown, people opted for work from home and were also self-dependent for the daily household work. These factors, subsequently, perhaps, encouraged more people towards purchasing appliances that facilitate daily work.
“In 2020, we witnessed the re-prioritization of product categories that accelerated growth of some of the key consumer durable product categories such as microwave and washing machine. The lockdown situation forced a paradigm shift in the way we live, work, engage and communicate. This led to the emergence of the at-home norm and gave the first big taste of DIY to the urban Indian consumers, especially the working class, as their focus shifted towards health, hygiene and safety”, said Nikhil Mathur, managing director, India, GfK.
According to GfK (India), premiumization was the trend across product categories. Also, an upward trend in online retail contribution to overall category sales of the consumer durables was observed. The given observations suggest that this trend is likely to continue in near future.
“As per GfK POS data, Q4’2020 witnessed a pent-up demand across categories coupled with heavy promotions by manufacturers and retailers making it the best performing quarter in last three years. Noteworthy to mention, this made Diwali season sales also one of the best festive seasons since 2018”, added Mathur.
While the observations made present an optimistic projection for the months ahead, there are factors which may affect the trajectory. Manufacturing locally, cost of logistics, prices of raw materials and public policy involving taxes and duties, like other markets, can play a role in the consumer appliances industry.