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Best Buy, Walmart Won 66% Of Circuit City Share: NPD

Port Washington, N.Y.
– Best Buy and Walmart were the biggest beneficiaries of Circuit City’s demise,
according to a new report from market research firm The NPD Group.

One year after the
chain’s dissolution, Best Buy and Walmart are sharing most of the spoils,
having captured two-thirds of Circuit City’s dollar share from March 2009
through December 2009.

The NPD report, “

Look at Retail: Post Circuit City

,” reveals that Best Buy extended its
U.S. retail lead in some of the CE industry’s most important product segments. The
chain’s dollar share in


increased 5.2 percentage points during the 10-month period as its
position as the only national electronics retail chain allowed it to make especially
strong gains in the premium $1,000-plus segment.

Walmart similarly
made TV inroads as a result of Circuit City’s closing, with flat-panel representing
the discounter’s best-performing category in overall share gains among the top CE
sectors with growth of 3.2 percentage points, NPD said.

PCs were another
bright spot for both retailers. Best Buy firmly established itself as the
dominant third-party seller of computers in the U.S., with much of those gains
coming through its Web site, while Walmart saw its year-over-year share
growth increase faster in notebooks than any other computer category. 


were another strong growth area for Best Buy, with dollar share gains
of 5.5 percentage points, equaling those of notebook PCs. Walmart, meanwhile, saw
its dollar share climb above its previous levels during the crucial fourth
quarter of 2009.

 “As its
nearest competitor, both in store locations and in consumer perception, Best
Buy was certain to be the big beneficiary from Circuit City’s closure,” said
Stephen Baker, industry analysis VP at NPD. “However, with the closures coming
at the same time as an economic recession, tumbling [average selling prices] in
both PCs and TVs, and Walmart’s renewed focus on consumer technology as a growth
opportunity, it is not surprising that Walmart also managed to grow
its share during this period.” 

 While Walmart
has traditionally seen its highest market share in the South, Best Buy was also
able to make significant gains in that region as the retail landscape changed,
NPD said. Walmart increased its dollar share by 2 percentage points in the
South, while Best Buy bested that with a 4 percentage point gain in that

 “We expect
that in 2010 all retail channels will focus on their share growth opportunity
in technology as new products, a better economy and renewed consumer
interest deliver an exciting sales outlook for the remainder of the year,”
stated Baker.

The NPD report is
based on data collected from the firm’s Consumer Tracking Service, an online
panel comprised of more than 1.8 million registered adults.