Rus News Journal

The commodity markets - Electronics

We wait for blossoming


Spring approach to the Russian market, undertaken Toshiba and Hitachi, activization Grundig, an exit on the Russian market of one more very large, but is not enough in Russia the known supplier of electronics - Mitshibishi, obvious aspiration to strengthen earlier positions at Sony, Panasonic, Samsung, Aiwa - all it allows to speak about a new coil of a competition of manufacturers for the Russian market of household electronics.
against decreasing profitability the competition has become aggravated and among wholesale and retail dealers - they already clearly have shown it mass reduction of prices. However it is now obvious that this market starts to gain in strength. Dumped during long - from January till July - crisis a ballast of non-realised stocks and to considerably thinned dealers electronics it is possible to prepare for the new period of a rise in prices.

revolution has eaten many children
Today trade in technics becomes - and for some firms already and became - unprofitable whereas at the very beginning of development of the market import audio - and video equipment, some years ago, profitability of trade in equipment reached 50 % and more. Then in so profitable sphere of business the weight of the companies has rushed. For the last years they managed to sate completely almost the Moscow market. Profitability fell gradually, and already to the middle of 1993 at dealers electronics practically was not such “ a fat “ - the stock of profitability allowing comfortably enough to run of business, if necessary reducing the prices and at the slightest possibility raising them. In the end of 1993 - the beginning of 1994 business has reached and losses.
so sharp change of a conjuncture on one of the stablest and capacious when - that of the markets became a pitiable consequence of events details about which are necessary for knowing that it is better to orient in a present situation in the market.
the consumer demand for technics traditionally grows in the autumn and in the spring in comparison with summer - on 20 - 30 %, and by New Year`s holidays (since new year - the new prices!) As a rule, still becomes more active. In the end of the last year it has become simply agiotage. To start buyers have raised hearings about increase of import tariffs and about liquidation “ valjutok “ moreover the enterprises which at the very end of December the government has thrown money, suddenly in a mass order have paid debts to workers. Here all affairs also have decided not to shelve and more soon to buy something expensive. All the November long and December the majority of trading houses worked in “ the fireman “ a mode, trying to provide sufferers electronics. The wave of buyers not only has raised the prices, but also - that was simply unprecedented by then - has simply washed off equipment from counters and warehouses. Behind Japanese TVs in some firms there were live turns.
Certainly those who had stocks more, have used short absence of competitors, and on separate models of technics of the price have flied up on extreme height. By the end of December - to the beginning of January the decent TV with a diagonal 51 - 54 sm (type Sony 2185 or Panasonic 21L1R) cost from $590 to $680 (whereas in the summer 1993 - an order of $500). TVs a class have more low risen in price to a lesser degree: JVC 21T1 has grown in the price from $350 - 400 to $370 - 440; Sharp 2131, accordingly, from $400 - 450 to $440 - 520. Most favourite by the people (by a principle “ import, big, cheap “) TV Funai 2000 from $290 - 320 has reached already $400. However, the prices for TVs are resulted only for an example, the agiotage reigned in all market. Two-cassette tape recorders and the musical centres, in hardly smaller degree - videorecorders and large-sized TVs have strongly risen in price a low class. A bright indicator of how well trade felt an excessive demand, it is possible to consider unprecedented disorder of the prices. The prices for the similar technics in firms of one rank happened, differed on 30 % whereas usually the difference does not exceed 5 %.
Looking at not running low stream of the clients, many not so large trading houses have decided that so now will be always and, taking credits, were accepted to purchases. Taking into account 2 - 3 week terms of delivery, they have received technics soon after New year and... Have suffered terrible defeat. In - the first it was found out that level of duties on the import technics has not changed almost (was 20 %, and became 25 %). In - the second that was much more unpleasant, “ has begun to jump “ a dollar exchange rate. Those who had a good retail network and possibility to exchange roubles at the rate of the Moscow Interbank Stock Exchange have least suffered. The same at whom such channels were not, have lost some weeks prior to 300 rbl. from each enclosed dollar. But losses were not limited to it. In April - May it was necessary to return extra money, but money was not. The excessive demand has subsided also suddenly, as well as has arisen. The part of clients has been cut at once, because having paid off in December, the enterprises have again ceased to pay the salary. Another - began to save money on holiday, a thunder-storm crisis approached. Now, upon termination of the second quarter, it is possible to sum already some it up: in the majority dealers have resisted, but what price... The third - to buy by the summer on a summer residence something is cheaper. Result: Now sales volumes of firms have fallen not to 20 % that would mean return from winter splash to usual languid summer demand, and for all of 40 %. And here to this day many dealers suffer, trying to sell the goods, sometimes below contract cost to pay off with creditors before to leave in a non-existence.

Keep though for a straw!
In the meantime others, without wishing to leave basically stable though and malodohodnyj the market, ways to survive search. The idle time from them - to try izbech payments of import duties, working or through “ exempts “ (scientific institutions, “ Afghans “ societies blind and so forth), or - that is more extended - using “ communications at customs “ (say that in the Sheremetyevo it manages from $2 thousand to $10 thousand) .
to involve in purchases began much more actively shuttles - and here now as when - that in 1990, again has quickened already was almost decayed “ grey “ import. Now, by some estimations, over 40 % of all technics it is delivered on the Russian market passing official representatives and distributors.
Were, of course, and more original decisions. So for example, representative Sharp, C. ITON not to cut the buyers, wishing to buy technics Sharp from the distributor, and at the same time not to be engaged in piece deliveries, has suggested to complete the container with the goods at once for several firms. The similar approach to deliveries will certainly cause weight of complexities with rastamozhivaniem (single presence of representatives of all firms is necessary, whose goods to be in the container), however look one of the few “ fair “ ways to keep sales volume at good level.
On known concessions under the pressure of dealers the manufacturers have gone also, doing not wish to lose “ turned out “ the market (see #14). Even eminent Sony in the end - the ends has been compelled to recognise existence “ dubajskoj “ technicians and to accept it on warranty service in Russia. Helping the official and informal sellers, have gone on price concessions and began to advertise more actively Hitachi, Toshiba, Grundig and other grandees who often at all had till now no representation in Moscow, including any dialogues with “ new Russian “ time waste. Trying to make active sales, manufacturers and dealers have considerably expanded assortment of household electronics, and now in Moscow it is possible to get without special work almost any model - from one-cassette radio tape recorder Osaca to karaoke Pioneer. There would be money. But them is that always does not suffice, and consequently the buyer present is choosy more than ever.

survival Strategy: to everyone the
Nothing and to hope now that times when in a trading floor, stuffing protection will return, somebody rushed, and with shouts “ thank God, it yet have not sold “ rushed to make out purchase of the TV with an one-and-a-half-metre diagonal and cost $5 thousand the buyer Has changed, the structure of deliveries, orientation of firms to this or that group of the goods has changed. The market has changed. And in new conditions if there is a desire to wait stabilisation and a rise in prices, it is necessary to work vzveshenno and it is careful, considering features of the market. And they are that. For many long years existence - and the market of household electronics one of the first became the market in a literal sense - the difference in rate of return was practically erased at trade in different kinds or technics marks. Differently, now all the same, whether the rate on the well-known trademark will become or for the mark of average popularity expensive or the cheap technics - profitability of operations will be approximately identical. Hardly - hardly it is possible to escape forward at the expense of escalating of sales volumes, and for this purpose it is necessary to react quickly to changes of consumer preferences, or if want, to watch a fashion. And here it is necessary to mention one more feature of the market. Unlike other markets, where it is possible to be guided accurately by consumer striations (a highly remunerative level of population, sredne - and nizkodohodnye groups), the market of household electronics “ it is greased “. Naturally, it is possible to assert with confidence that from a pay in 100 - 300 thousand roubles karaoke not begin to be spent for the same, and having $10 thousand, hardly will buy Funai. However division into consumer striations also comes to an end with it. Household electronics is bought not daily, and once a year - two, and people here are ready to spend much more solid means, rather than it seems possible at their incomes. Therefore buyers Black Trinitron along with a highly remunerative part of the population can become that is called, the simple workers saving on “ the Sony “ many long years.
however we will try to allocate nevertheless three segments of the market of household electronics: the high quality expensive technics; average on quality and the price; the cheap. It is important to notice that many known Japanese and European firms - Sony, Panasonic, Hitachi, Sharp - now make both very expensive technics with use of high technologies, and simple enough - for the wide consumer, accordingly, keeping at the low price high quality. We will try to spend the analysis on an example of TVs which make a basis of import of home appliances. Conclusions on market TV can be extrapolated on video markets - and audiosystems. Unique deviation from it will be that only the market of TVs the considerable role is played by a domestic production competing with import at the expense of low and main fixed of the price (in some state shops of the price for domestic TVs time in half a year) changes. Certainly, here we mean TVs “ the fifth generation “ on technical characteristics not conceding to some Japanese analogues. However for the analysis not so essentially occurrence “ the additional competitor “: nizkodohodnaja the part of the population buying domestic TV, in other sectors of the market is guided by production Funai, Supra, Shivaki.

So, on what to stake?
Spent polls of buyers and sellers show that are most perspective for trade of model of TVs with a diagonal of 14 inches (36 sm) and 20 - 21 inch (51 - 53 sm). And though in due time trade wide-screen TV made the greatest profit (under our data, every third “ a shuttle “ in 1991 carried the TV with a diagonal 25 - 29 inches), to stake now on this
goods is not necessary: the market is sated, there is a risk to freeze considerable means. However and trade in TVs with a small and average diagonal is profitable today only at great volumes of sales that forces to concern a mark choice more attentively. Whether
there should be it a domestic production TV? The analysis shows that at a present market situation orientation to the domestic technics is possible, but is strategically incorrect. Now, at annual demand for TVs at level 10 - 12 million and decrease in manufacture of domestic TVs (from 8 million in 1990 to 5 million) demand for them almost completely “ it is closed “ that reduces possibilities for any games with the prices. The analysis shows that the share of the market remaining for home producers, is reduced - potential buyers are switched to the import goods not only from the general mistrust to a domestic production. As it is paradoxical, to repair “ Soviet “ the TV is more difficult now, than import. And the prices on Funai and “ Horizon “ already not so differ to make a choice unequivocally in advantage “ Horizon “. About success of small Japanese firm in the Russian market says at least that fact that the sales volume of technics Funai is comparable to indicators Sharp and Hitachi.
Polls have confirmed that the mass consumer is guided on Funai, and also Supra and Shivaki. Production of two last firms surpasses in quality and functional features domestic and consequently costs slightly more expensively a little. Demand for it remains extremely high: on everyone realised in usual Moscow trading house Sharp it is necessary 3 - 4 TVs Funai (it basically Funai 2000 and 1400 with a teletext and without). Slightly worse at this firm affairs with videorecorders (Funai 8008 both 3 IT جت6 and 7) and videoplayers (Funai 5000LR and 5000HC) are that speaks presence on sale of other marks of video equipment at the prices, commensurable with prices Funai.

It is possible to experiment with middle class
Some experts foretell reorientation of demand to the better goods that can break firm Funai leadership in this segment of the market. Applicants for its laurels Japanese and European firms look, the basic which volumes of production are calculated on “ serednjaka “ - Hitachi, Toshiba, Sharp, Philips, Grundig, JVC, Nokia, Akai, Aiwa. By the way, the majority of them try to take root and on the market of expensive equipment developed taking into account the newest technologies, and offer a number of other innovations, type of new system of sounding (Dolby Surround), system IDTV or the hinges turning the TV on 180 ° and operated distantsionno. However in the Moscow warehouses of such technics it is not enough, as well as its basic buyers - well-founded provincials.
to the expensive goods we still will return, for now we will dwell upon standard production listed above firms. Such technics is bought basically by people, not embarrassed financially, or those who wants to replace import equipment of poor quality with something more reliable. Thanking “ grey “ It is presented import widely enough (an exception - Nokia, whose production gets to Russia from Europe through the distributor). And especially in this group it is necessary to note Samsung to which for last four years managed to leave on in the lead positions on sales volume of household electronics not only among the Korean firms, but also to press in Russia (and in the world) eminent Japanese concerns. The separation of this firm from its Korean competitors shows at least that fact that some dealers working from Daewoo or GoldStar, are switched on Samsung.
At last, among expensive marks leaders on demand remain Sony and Panasonic. Demand for technics Sony Thanks to active advertising concedes only Funai. The Increasing popularity in this sector of the market is got also by systems Hihg End and Hi - Fi. Needs of admirers Hi - Fi in Russia almost completely satisfy Pioneer and Aiwa through the dealers (at Pioneer them 4, at Aiwa - 1) offering wide choice Hi - Fi - components (decks, amplifiers, tuners, CD - players) of which the buyer can make the musical system necessary to it itself. This segment of the Russian market as well as previous, it is rather perspective, it is estimated approximately in $10 million a year and continues to grow, in spite of the fact that pleasure this expensive (average this sort of system will cost not less than $700). Admirers of trade in high quality equipment also can to advise pay attention to production new to Russia, for example, Pioneer with improved technical characteristics and unusual design of the case (it of the golden colour reminding colour of the first Soviet radio-gramophones). For the buyer who has got used recently to see all technician exclusively black, such design can appear a quite good bait. Well, and having allured it now, can be it will be possible to entice it and in the autumn when, under forecasts of experts, it is possible to wait for rise in prices and accordingly profitability growth.

DMITRY - DOBROV, MARINA - SHPAGINA