“We saw some record months and it seems to just keep snowballing along. Online sales are very strong and ILVE cooking is very strong off the back of the huge increase in purchasing domestic appliances in Q2.
“The replacement market turned into a renovation market and we have seen a boom in renovations. Looking to Q4, I don’t see a slowdown in sales or demand, but the biggest challenge will be supply. It’s going to be tougher than it has been, but it is what it is. One of our manufacturers described it to us as a global explosion in demand for domestic appliances, which sounds pretty dramatic but it’s true.
“The pandemic and the factory closures, although they are up and running again at lower capacities, the global explosion in demand has led to a shortage around the world. We have had shipping problems over the last couple of weeks, delays in manufacturing and I could go on, but it’s a challenge. It’s not doom and gloom, we have a lot of stock coming in – in that sense it’s good because it comes in and goes out straight away – it’s just getting in front of that stock situation is the most difficult part.
“So, what Q4 brings is a bit unknown but we will do what we do. It’s encouraging from a cooking point of view with our Majestic range, the order intake has been great. Positive times, just challenging.”
Q3 was also strong for Shriro, according to general manager for the appliance division, Brad Street.
“There were some concerns about Victoria going into lockdown, but the momentum continued so it was strong across all of our brands. However, stock remains a significant issue. We have got our way through where we can, and we are not alone in this scenario, but it doesn’t look like it’s letting up anytime soon,” he told Appliance Retailer in a recent video interview.
“Our new challenge now isn’t so much having it manufactured but getting it on a boat and getting it to Australia. Ships aren’t coming as frequently; shipping lanes are congested, and we had recent strike action out of NSW so it’s still an issue. We were hoping to be back on track by early September, but we are still pushing our way through to try and fulfil orders. It’s not as smooth sailing as what we expected. Speaking to our merchant partners, they are sharing the same frustration, so it’s one of those things where if we all had more stock, we would be selling more. It’s just a matter of being able to get what we can when we can and put it in the marketplace.
“Christmas is going to be all about stock. Traditionally these are the strong months and I wouldn’t say they are going to be any weaker than normal but we have had a number of strong months with COVID so it will be interesting to see if the momentum will continue on but our numbers will be skewed on the back of stock.”
“The whole industry has had a huge uplift and being of the major players, we have seen growth across our house of brands. Our expectations into Christmas are that strong performance will continue right through to Q1 2021. For us as a company, we have been going through a restructure around how we set up our operations and in particular, what we have been able to do through COVID and with the Khapra beetle issue to display how agile we can be within the new way of working. Credit to the team and how they have performed to maintain continuity of supply and working closely with our partners to make that happen,” he said.
Q3 was stronger than anticipated for Glem Gas with sales targets reached and the right product mix that was anticipated for, managing director David Gilmore told Appliance Retailer in a recent video interview.
“Coming into Q4, the only impact we are going to have is stock. We have product coming in at the beginning of November, the end of November and into December but each step along the way, we are getting delayed by docks. In terms of demand, in cooking we expect the demand to stay consistent, whether there’s a drop off from the excess of sales in June and July, I am not sure, but we are optimistic. We are all staying at home and not spending any money, so the bottom line is good.”
Jura managing director, George Liakatos said one of the positive outcomes of the pandemic has been strong demand in the industry.
“We have seen higher than expected sales quarter for quarter and even with the restrictions in Victoria, we saw positive growth. This is leaning quite positively when we have a lens towards Christmas. I expect this trend will continue as there is still a lot of uncertainty with travel and other areas of the economy that remain closed. The desire to invest in the home will continue,” he told Appliance Retailer in a recent video interview.
“The only thing that may be an issue is stock availability. What we are seeing in Australia is very common with global shortages of inventory across the network and it’s not a unique problem because supply chains have been stretched and exhausted to meet the demand.
“We are okay currently but there are particular models which we will struggle with, but we are trying to prepare as much as possible. Having our products come from Switzerland adds additional lead times so we are looking at all options to ensure we can fulfil all Christmas orders.”
On Wednesday, Jura opened its Melbourne Hospitality Centre to customers for the first time since July.
“After many months of heavy restrictions and mandatory closures, we are able to welcome our customers into our Hospitality Centre again,” Liakatos said.
“Needless to say, we were kept very busy with a steady stream of people. Our operations also returned to normal with our warehouse, logistics and service personnel back at full capacity.
“Our field staff will also be able to return to work where possible based on the needs and requirements of our trade and retail partners. Unfortunately, we aren’t able to welcome our administration and customer support staff back to the office, but we are hoping this will be possible in the near future.
“Yesterday was a great day and it is extremely important for confidence in the community especially heading into our most important season of the year. It is a credit to the entire team that we have been able to operate without closing in this challenging environment and we look forward with optimism on the path ahead.”
Groupe SEB managing director,Joe Tizzone said Q3 sales performance was extremely strong – possibly the strongest third quarter that the business has had for many years – building on the momentum from Q2.
“This was driven by consumers spending more time at home and in the kitchen, which has translated into sales particularly for Cook4Me pressure cookers, rice cookers, air fryers and even linen care with products like the IXEO and IXEO Power,” he told Appliance Retailer.
“We have had access to additional stock that we hadn’t planned for, but were able to access. We are planning for a strong Christmas with double digit growth. We are working with our retail partners to ensure we are positioned correctly in-store and in catalogues so overall, it’s a positive message from us.”