NASHVILLE, TENN. – The major appliance market has renewed its momentum following a slow start this year.
According to Patrick Maloney, appliances senior VP for the Nationwide Marketing Group, consumer demand is strong, average ticket is up, and supply issues at Whirlpool and Electrolux that hamstrung dealers earlier this year have since been rectified.
“Now, our numbers are straight up, like a hockey stick,” he said here last week at the independent dealer group’s PrimeTime show.
The industry is showing particular strength in premium kitchen, where shoppers are favoring stainless steel finishes and complete suites of products, he noted.
Added executive VP Jeff Knock: “Our appliance mix improvement is historic.”
Broader factors at play include the rapid growth of Samsung and LG, which is breeding greater competition and innovation, Maloney said. And while the resulting share grabs have fomented “aggressive promotional calendars from vendors,” the discounting is confined to fixed periods.
“Unlike electronics, we maintain price points for more than a week,” he quipped.
Majap dealers and vendors can also look forward to a robust replacement cycle, he said, as the industry anniversaries a period of historic growth in 2003 to 2005, and appliances purchased during that time approach end-of-life.
Also fueling growth for Nationwide dealers is the decline of majap powerhouse Sears. “They’re losing share,” he said, “and we will capture a lot of that business.”
To further boost margins and baskets, the group has expanded its outdoor cooking offering with the additions of vendors Louisiana Grill and Swiss Grill, and is also entering the profitable kitchen countertop category.
“We’re adding more things to the cart, and new brands to upsell,” Maloney said.