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Top 100 Majap Dealers See 3.7% Decline in Sales in ’09

NEW YORK — Retail sales of major
appliances by the industry’s 100 largest
dealers fell by the mid-single digits for
the second consecutive year in 2009.

According to the annual TWICE
Top 100 Appliance Retailers Report,
prepared with market research partner
The Stevenson Company, white-goods
sales slipped 3.7 percent last year to
$22.6 billion
for the topranked
which accounted
more than
90 percent of
U.S. appliance

Nevertheless, the Top 100 dealers
continued to outpace the major appliance
industry, which slid 6.5 percent last
year — its fourth consecutive year of declines
— as the home-builder channel
remained mired in overcapacity.

In fact, the downturn began to ease
for dealers last year, as the rate of decline
slowed from the 4.7 percent dip
reported by TWICE for the 2008 calendar

Contributing to the improvement were
the first faint signs of an economic recovery,
as federal bailout funds helped the financial sector find its footing following
the post-Lehman Brothers freefall.

Dealers also benefitted from the closure
of competitors. Buying groups estimate
that between 10 percent and 14
percent of the independent channel
called it quits during the depths of the
recession, although casualties continue
to mount, most notably with the bankruptcy
of Bernie’s earlier this year.

Perhaps the biggest boost to Top 100
sales was the decision by major appliance
retailers and manufacturers to
participate in a major way in Black Friday
promotions. Taking a cue from the
sister CE trade, white-goods partners
mounted aggressive, day-after-Thanksgiving
doorbuster promotions that
helped jumpstart stagnant sales. Deals
included a Whirlpool Duet laundry
pair for less than $1,000 (at Lowe’s),
and a $500 Frigidaire top-load laundry
pair (at P.C. Richard & Son).

Apparently the ploy worked: According
to comparison shopping service
Top 100 Majap Dealers See 3.7% Decline in Sales in ’09, sales of laundry pairs,
which was one of the most heavily discounted
categories that weekend, rose 70
percent year over year on Black Friday.

Still, the relatively mild 3.7 percent decline
belies the volatility behind the Top
100 sales average. Results ranged from
the 23 percent spike attributed to Airport
Home Appliance (No. 42) to Urner’s precipitous
26 percent plunge, which put it in
96th place, down from 88 last year.

At the other end of the appliance spectrum,
Sears retained its crown as the No.
1 retailer of major appliances, but continued
to cede share as white-goods sales declined
8.2 percent last year despite steep
and relentless price promotions.

Nipping at its heels was Lowe’s,
which managed to eke out a nearly 4
percent gain, to $4.5 billion, buoyed
by a broader assortment, a higher close
rate and more new stores than its homeimprovement

Next year’s tally should show continued
gains thanks to the $300 million
federal stimulus program.


NEW YORK — The TWICE Top 100 Major
Appliance Retailers Report ranks the
leading domestic white-goods dealers
by sales of major appliances for the 2009
calendar year.

Sales figures are based on information
that was supplied by retailers responding
to a survey by TWICE and its research
partner The Stevenson Company. Absent
their input, estimates were developed
from Stevenson’s internal market
tracking surveys (TraQline) and industry
sizing based on wholesale shipment fi gures
from the Association of Home Appliance
Manufacturers (AHAM), average
retail price points by products, housing
market data and other sources.

All estimates were further refined and
submissions vetted using public filings
with the Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC), TWICE industry analyses,
financial analysts’ reports, published
data and other sources. Sales
figures for 2009 were then compared to
2008 sales tallies and adjusted if necessary
to more closely track industrywide
revenue growth.

Major appliance dealers must meet
the following criteria to be considered
for inclusion:

• sell new products directly to consumers;

• have brick-and-mortar retail stores
or a significant online presence;

• sell major appliances as one of their
principal lines of business;

• do not sell solely to the builder channel
or to multi-family dwellings; and

• sell at least one of the following major
appliance categories as defined by
AHAM: washers, dryers, refrigerators,
freezers, dishwashers, ranges, cooktops,
wall ovens, microwave ovens, room
air conditioners and dehumidifiers.

Sales are considered to be the revenue
received for merchandise only, and
which is sold solely through the retail

Stevenson, based in Louisville, Ky.,
has served the majap industry for the
past 16 years, more recently adding CE
to its service portfolio. Its TraQline syndicated
quarterly survey of 150,000 shoppers
measures retail purchases of consumer
durables, and provides estimates
of unit and dollar market share and other
key data points.