Recession continues to squeeze pet care sales
The ongoing recession which severely damaged the Greek economy continued to result in immense pressure on pet care. Shrinking disposable incomes caused by extremely high unemployment rates and the unprecedented austerity measures undertaken by the Greek Government, such as extended cuts to pensions and incomes, redundancies in the public sector, higher income taxes and additional taxes for all Greek property owners, squeezed consumer activity in Greece. As the average Greek household struggled, consumers were keen to cut back on all purchases which were not essential and could be postponed. In this context, spending on pet care declined over the review period and continued to fall in 2015.
Decline in pet ownership hinders growth
In line with the gloomy economic circumstances, pet ownership declined as fewer Greeks could afford the costs of having a pet, even though their need for companionship increased. Given this, volume sales of pet food recorded negative growth in 2015. Financially-strapped Greek consumers, even those who had always had a pet in their households, become increasingly reluctant to acquire a pet. This was strongly reflected in sales, particularly in products for puppies and kittens.
More players enter pet care despite the limited growth potential
Despite the adverse economic conditions and the fact that the pet care market became ever more competitive as all players struggled to survive, the competitive landscape became increasingly fragmented, with numerous new brands and players entering on an annual basis. With unemployment rising, importing and distributing goods seems to have been regarded as a solution for many ambitious Greeks and pet care was a category that attracted many new players. Greece in 2014 had the largest number of pet product distributors and importers in Western Europe, reaching approximately 300. The categories affected the most by this trend were premium and economy dog and cat food. The presence of small brands was also significant in bird food and pet dietary supplements, as well as pet healthcare.
Internet sales are on the rise
In the context of constantly shrinking sales, competition among retailers was fierce. Pet care retail space has reduced since the recession, with many small pet shops closing. Large chained retailers, such as Pet City, were in a better condition to compete, and thus had an advantage over smaller independent retailers, while the leading pet superstore chain invested in expanding its outlet network. Nevertheless, the most dynamic channel in 2015 was non-store retailing, with internet sales recording strong growth. Greek consumers, traditionally mistrustful of online shopping, began to overcome their doubts and looked to the internet in order to find better deals. Thus, although still lagging behind the Western European average, internet sales in Greece quickly gained pace and pet care was one of the markets to witness an increase in online sales. The introduction of an e-shop by Pet City contributed greatly to this trend, while many pet shop owners which were unable to cope with the recession closed their stores and opted for this channel, where operating costs are significantly lower.
The decline in value sales is set to continue
The Greek pet care market is expected to continue to register negative growth in value terms over the forecast period when measured at constant 2015 prices. Although Greek consumers are now beginning to familiarise themselves with the new reality, which is so different from the pre-crisis era, and are adjusting their consumption patterns accordingly, they have become extremely price sensitive. In this context, Greek pet owners will likely continue to favour economy pet food and trade down from premium. Even those loyal to premium brands will shop around for discounts or opt for less expensive premium brands.
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Discover the latest market trends and uncover sources of future market growth for the Pet Care industry in Greece with research from Euromonitor's team of in-country analysts.
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The Pet Care in Greece market research report includes:
- Analysis of key supply-side and demand trends
- Detailed segmentation of international and local products
- Historic volumes and values, company and brand market shares
- Five year forecasts of market trends and market growth
- Robust and transparent market research methodology, conducted in-country
Our market research reports answer questions such as:
- What is the market size of Pet Care in Greece?
- What are the major brands in Greece?
- How did the downturn affect pet care spending?
- Which is the best-performing category within pet care?
- Which is the fastest-growing pet food manufacturer?
- How have pet specialists fared in recent years?
- What are growth prospects for pet care in the next 5 years?
Why buy this report?
- Gain competitive intelligence about market leaders
- Track key industry trends, opportunities and threats
- Inform your marketing, brand, strategy and market development, sales and supply functions
This industry report originates from Passport, our Pet Care market research database.