Howard Chapman, Buildingtalk Editor, reports from the latest Stelrad Radiators ‘state of the market’ briefing held last week at the Churchill War Rooms in London.
John Colling, Business Development Director at Stelrad Radiator Group, outlines the market challenges and opportunities in the UK, one of the most significant markets for radiators in Europe.
In 2016, a 2% volume reduction is forecast. However, a slow recovery is expected, driven by residential new build (see UK radiators 2014 – 2019 graph below).
Brexit has had little affect on Stelrad sales and they expect limited difficulties, not least because Stelrad radiator manufacturing is predominanatly locally based in their export market countries. However, like other manufacturers, the impact of currency fluctuations remains a challenge.
Recent economic uncertainty has stalled growth and radiator volumes are broadly static, plus prices have fallen and costs increased.
Social Housing spend has fallen significantly over the last two years and the commercial radiator market is in structural decline as alternative technologies gain ground. Despite an improving trend, residential new build remains at historically low levels but expected to improve.
However there are still opportunities. The private RMI business (the one-off sector, which represents 60% of the market) has remained stable – and the Stelrad brand regained number one position in this market.
The designer radiator volume growth is out performing the radiator market as a whole and offers better profit margins. In fact, new designer radiator launches and other new products such as the Planar HD (a heavy duty radiator for the commercial sector) are driving Stelrad Radiator Group’s continued market expansion and share improvement.
And finally, the ‘Towel Warmer’ market is strong and there is a growth in demand for ‘Up the Wall’ radiators as home owners look to maximise the use of space.
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