As in most other major appliances categories, large cooking appliances was negatively impacted by the dampening of the housing market and consumers delaying redecoration plans because of financial concerns and lockdown restrictions preventing construction workers from entering homes. These factors led to consumers postponing replacing and upgrading their existing large cooking appliances, which resulted in a marked decline in sales in the category during the year.
The closure of physical stores in the first quarter of 2020 and the consumer shift to e-commerce during lockdown had a notable negative impact on sales of large cooking appliances. In general, consumers like to take a good look at big-ticket items, such as built-in hobs and cooker hoods, and experience them first-hand before making a purchase.
Hangzhou Robam Industrial Group Co Ltd remained the leading player in large cooking appliances in 2020, holding a narrow lead over Ningbo Fotile Kitchenware Co Ltd in both built-in hobs and cooker hoods. Robam has developed a premium positioning for its brands, offering a variety of models targeting the kitchen pain points of high-end consumers.
Leading player, Hangzhou Robam Industrial Group Co Ltd launched the Robam Ling Long Cooker Hood, which offers consumers strong suction power and an improved design that is better able to contain the smoke produced by cooking, as well as the capacity to be connected to a built-in hob. The product, therefore, addresses rising consumer concerns about the impact of domestic pollutants on health, which have been bolstered by spending so much time at home and, particularly, cooking at home during the COVID-19 crisis.
Large cooking appliances is expected to bounce back strongly in 2021 and, indeed, to see strong year-on-year growth throughout the rest of the forecast period, though the category is not expected to exceed pre-COVID-19 volumes until 2023. Growth will be supported by furnished housing policies relating to the installation of basic kitchen and bathroom appliances in properties prior to their sale by real estate developers.
Growth in built-in hobs and cooker hoods during the forecast period will be constrained by the high level of penetration achieved by these categories in higher-tier cities. This means that growth is increasingly reliant on consumers looking to upgrade their existing appliances to provide a better and more convenient cooking experience.
Manufacturers are expected to continue to promote combo sales, building on consumers’ increased interest in home cooking resulting from the experience of home seclusion during lockdown, which has the potential to boost demand for the upgrading of large cooking appliances. Combo appliances with harmonious design and connected functions, such as built-in hoods with connected cooker hoods and ovens with connected dishwashers, are expected to become an important focus of the leading players’ efforts to target high-end consumers.
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