News Article | February 18, 2017
Zuppa di Pesce, 28-day matured steaks, asparagus spears, and a £35 bottle of champagne to wash it down. This may not sound like your typical shopping basket from Iceland, but the UK’s homegrown cut-price chain is experiencing a revival in sales after taking a tip from Germany’s Aldi and Lidl by offering luxury foods that broaden its appeal. After about two years “in the wilderness”, in the words of founder Malcolm Walker, during which sales and profits dipped, Iceland is celebrating its 47th year in business with a surprise revival. Iceland has just been named as the UK’s best online supermarket by 7,000 shoppers polled by consumer group Which? for the second year running. They also rated its stores ahead of much larger chains Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Asda. The chain increased sales by 8.6% in the three months to the end of January, taking its market share to 2.3%, the highest level since 2001, according to market analysts Kantar Worldpanel. Walker says sales at established stores are rising again after investment in better quality products and some smart advertising campaigns, which are finally helping to shrug off Iceland’s links to Kerry Katona and doner kebab pizzas. “Many companies, if they see a drop in profits, cut costs. We did the opposite and spent money,” says Walker. Backing from Brait, the investment vehicle of acquisitive South African entrepreneur Christo Wiese, which upped its stake in Iceland to 57% from about 20% in late 2015, has helped support the revival. Walker says he brought in new management across all areas of the business, including former Morrisons and Waitrose head chef Neil Nugent who he set up as head of product development with a £3m development kitchen. “It was a bit of a Portakabin before,” says Walker. Ideas have also been imported from The Food Warehouse, a sister chain run by Walker’s son Richard, which is also providing another avenue of growth. It currently has 34 stores, which are larger than Iceland shops and sit on retail parks rather than high streets. There are plans for between 25 and 30 more over the next few years. In Iceland, you can still buy shepherds pie, a cheesy bean and sausage stew or McCain oven chips for £1. But there are also frozen scallops, whole Dover Sole and tuna steaks, as well as Slimming World ready meals, Pizza Express ice-cream and pizzas, and frozen berries for juicing. The chain now has 50 luxury food lines compared with a handful a year ago. The change in menu is tempting in more shoppers while existing customers are spending more. What’s more, nearly 19% of the chain’s punters now hail from the middle class AB demographic, according to Kantar Worldpanel, compared with 16.1% in 2015. Shoppers are buying more fresh and chilled foods, as well as frozen fish and ready meals. Bryan Roberts, a retail analyst at TCC Global, says Iceland has found a way to fight back against stiff competition by Aldi, Lidl and the bigger supermarkets, which had all expanded their ranges of frozen foods. “Historically Iceland has failed to communicate its benefits, using uninspiring celebrities. Arguably they were just preaching to the converted. But its recent advertising has been more aspirational and has demonstrated its often unacknowledged breadth of range in fresh and ambient as well as frozen foods,” Roberts says. Walker also admits Iceland’s website was “a bit Fisher-Price”, or basic, when it first launched three years ago, but online sales are now increasing by as much as 50% year on year. That’s partly thanks to low delivery charges, but those polled by Which? also praised the quality of its fresh products and its friendly, helpful drivers. The next stage of Iceland’s development can be found in Clapham, a well-to-do suburb of south London, where Iceland has been experimenting with a hipsterish store designed to attract shoppers from the Little Waitrose next door. There are smart vertical freezers with sloped doors which show off products more effectively, double the amount of fresh fruit and veg moved to the front of the store and a much bigger wine and beer section. With lots of colourful pictures of food on walls and pillars, it feels more like a small supermarket than a typical Iceland, which can often seem bleak and dated. Regular shoppers filling their baskets on Friday morning say they find it much easier to move around and spot what they want. One says she’s not yet been tempted by the octopus or clams but adds: “Ooh, it’s not too posh for me.” Sales have doubled since the Clapham store’s refit in October, while only about 10% of the range is different to a regular Iceland, mostly imported from Food Warehouse. The group is now planning six more makeovers similar to Clapham elsewhere in London, including stores in Fulham, Worcester Park, Streatham and East Finchley, and will be roadtesting most of the elements at a refit of its Chester store, close to Iceland’s head office, from next week. About 50 more of Iceland’s 882 UK stores are already lined up for a makeover within the next year if the first six perform well. Walker says: “The middle classes wouldn’t have been seen dead in [the Clapham store] before but they’ve said ‘this looks quite smart’ and when they go in they’re blown away by the products and prices.”
News Article | November 15, 2016
On a busy day for corporate and economic news, leading shares have turned their attention away - briefly - from the shock Donald Trump victory in the US election. The FTSE 100 is currently up 60.05 points at 6813.23, while the pound is on the slide after weaker than expected UK inflation figures dampened the prospects of a Bank of England rate rise in the near future. Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG, said: Supermarkets are in demand after overall grocery sales rose in the 12 weeks to November 6, according to Kantar Worldpanel, although the individual pattern was mixed. Tesco, up 7.35p to 213.2p, saw sales grow at their fastest rate in three years while Morrisons, 8.4p better at 221p, reported a 2.4% fall, which reflected some store closures. Elsewhere pharmaceutical group Hikma is 66p higher at £16.90 after a positive note from Morgan Stanley. The bank put an overweight rating on the business with a £22 price target, saying: Lack of pipeline visibility has been our main concern. Our new deep dive into Hikma’s medium term pipeline and long term opportunities gives us increased confidence. While it doesn’t change the near term trajectory, it points to a pathway for sustained growth and should lead to a multiple re-rating. Our estimate of a $600m generic pipeline brings clarity. We have uncovered what we believe to be 70% of Hikma’s filed pipeline. Clarity on the nature and timing of projects removes a key overhang. Hikma’s acquisition of Roxane was not only for its pipeline, but also its legal and R&D expertise, which helps position Hikma to deliver and enter a higher value add market. We worked our way down from the 800+ drug list of pending generic filings and found that Hikma is well placed to capitalise long term. A third of this list are Central Nervous System drugs, an area the company has expertise in. We estimate a further combined value of $750m comes from scheduled and extended release drugs, two areas Hikma has been explicit in targeting. While we do not know if Hikma is behind these specific filings, these areas represent the generic opportunity set where Hikma is well placed and likely to pursue, providing a healthy LT pipeline. With Hikma trading at 15 times 2017 estimated earnings, a substantial discount to history, we see limited downside near-term. The stock has underperformed by 19% over the past 3 months; we see upside as we view the stock as oversold. Land Securities has been lifted 33p to £10.18 following a lower than expected fall in net asset value, a 4.5% rise in revenue profit - although it fell into a £95m pretax loss after property revaluations - and comments that it was “relatively insulated” against any weakness in the property market following the “uncharted territory” after the Brexit vote. Tobacco group BAT is 26p better £43.07 despite reports that US target Reynolds had rejected its $47bn bid. But mining shares have lost ground after their recent gains, with Antofagasta falling 40.5p to 665.5p and Rio Tinto down 130p at 3015.5p. The sector had been boosted by hopes of increased demand if Trump fulfils his pledge to boost US infrastructure spending. Among the mid-caps, TalkTalk is down 10.8p at 190.3p following its figures, while biotech group BTG has lost 27p to 619p despite a 24% rise in half year revenues. Analysts said foreign exchange movements had hit earnings, with Jefferies saying:
News Article | December 7, 2016
Last month was a "record breaker" for Apple. The tech giant's App Store saw its highest monthly sales ever in November, tweeted Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, on Wednesday. While Schiller didn't give specifics, data from research firm Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows Apple's iOS software gaining ground in the smartphone market, which could help boost App Store sales. In the US, iOS grew seven percent year over year, grabbing 40.5 percent of smartphone sales for the three months ending October 2016, according to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. App store sales may also see a December boost thanks to the $10 iOS game Super Mario Run, Nintendo's highly anticipated mobile game set to be released December 15. For more Apple insights from Schiller, read CNET's exclusive interview from late October, just before the announcement of the new MacBook Pro models.
News Article | November 9, 2016
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - Nov 9, 2016) - The latest smartphone OS sales data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows a strong 5.2% percentage point US market share increase for iOS during the third quarter of 2016 to 34.2%. Both iOS and Android made gains across most of the EU5 countries. However, Android posted a 3.3 percentage point decline in the US from 66.7 to 63.4%, while iOS share fell in Germany from 17.5% to 15% and in Urban China from 18.7% to 14.2%. "In the US, the new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus models made an immediate impact, becoming the best-selling smartphones in the month of September at 17.1%," said Lauren Guenveur, Consumer Insight Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. "Strong sales of the iPhone 7 and the lower-priced iPhone 6s, the second best-selling device in the US in September, contributed to an overall growth of iOS to 34.2% in the third quarter of 2016. "Despite some sales from the beleaguered Samsung Galaxy Note 7, still technically available through the month of September, Samsung posted a year-on-year decline from 36.9% to 33.8% of US smartphone sales in the third quarter," Guenveur continued. "The holiday sales season may prove to be more challenging than normal for Samsung, who competes head-to-head with Apple during this crucial time of year. Fallout from the Note 7 recall could have an unintended impact on continuing sales of other, similarly-named Samsung devices (chiefly the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge), as consumers may not always understand the difference between the model names. However, deep holiday discounts, as we saw with the Galaxy S6 last year, may counteract any expected negative impact, as the driving reason for choice among US consumers remains finding a good deal on the price of the phone." "In Great Britain, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus were top-sellers during the month of September, accounting for 15.1% of sales," said Dominic Sunnebo, Business Unit Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Europe. "In the third quarter of 2016, iOS accounted for 40.6% of smartphone sales, a 2.4 percentage point increase from the same period a year ago. It's interesting to note the continued success of the iPhone SE in Britain, accounting for 8.5% of sales in the quarter vs. a share of just 3.5% in the US." "Britain is the only market where Samsung made year-on-year gains, totaling 30.4% of smartphone sales," Sunnebo added. "In Italy, Huawei replaced Samsung as the reigning smartphone leader to become the top brand sold at 27.3%, a 15.2 percentage point gain vs. the third quarter 2015. Samsung accounted for 24.7% of smartphone sales in Italy, a decline from 40.6%. In Spain, Huawei and Samsung are now neck-and-neck, with Samsung edging out Huawei 24.2% vs. 23.3%." In Urban China, Android accounted for 85.3% of smartphone sales in the third quarter of 2016, its second highest share ever in this market. "Oppo continues to see significant growth, gaining 8.2 percentage points over the past year to become the 4th largest manufacturer in Urban China with 11.2% of smartphone sales. The Oppo R9 overtook the iPhone 6s as the best-selling device in the third quarter," reported Tamsin Timpson, Strategic Insight Director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Asia. "iOS posted yet another year-on-year decline to 14.2% of smartphone sales in the third quarter of 2016. Importantly, this marks a period-on-period return to growth in sales, up from 13.5% in the three months ending in August. With supply constrained on the iPhone 7, and particularly the 7 Plus, this positive turn for Apple is a good sign, suggesting that as supply grows to meet demand, Apple will be able to turn the tide in Urban China." Note: The Kantar Worldpanel ComTech dataviz can be embedded into online articles for a visual representation of Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Smartphone OS market share data. Click here to copy the embed code. To view an HTML version of the summary data and an optional PDF file, please visit: http://www.kantarworldpanel.com/global/News/-iPhone-7-and-7-Plus-Boost-iOS-Share-in-US Additional insights are available in our blog post: http://www.kantarworldpanel.com/global/News/Smartphones-in-the-USA-A-Two-Year-Retrospective About Kantar Worldpanel ComTech's Smartphone OS Market Share Data Kantar Worldpanel ComTech's smartphone OS market share data provides the media and businesses with access to the most up-to-date sales and market share figures for the major smartphone operating systems. This information is based on research extracted from the Kantar Worldpanel ComTech global consumer panel. ComTech is the largest continuous consumer research mobile phone tracking panel of its kind in the world, conducting over one million interviews per year in Europe alone. ComTech tracks mobile phone behavior -- including phone purchases, bills/airtime, source of purchase, and usage. It also delivers additional data to promote an understanding of the drivers of share changes, and consumer insight market dynamics. All consumer data in this release excludes enterprise sales. About Kantar Worldpanel Kantar Worldpanel is the global expert in shoppers' behaviour. Through continuous monitoring, advanced analytics and tailored solutions, Kantar Worldpanel inspires successful decisions by brand owners, retailers, market analysts and government organisations globally. With over 60 years' experience, a team of 3,500, and services covering 60 countries directly or through partners, Kantar Worldpanel turns purchase behaviour into competitive advantage in markets as diverse as FMCG, impulse products, fashion, baby, telecommunications and entertainment, among many others. For further information, please visit us at www.kantarworldpanel.com. Twitter: Google+: LinkedIn: RSS: Newsletter: Kantar is one of the world's leading data, insight and consultancy companies. Working together across the whole spectrum of research and consulting disciplines, its specialist brands, employing 30,000 people, provide inspirational insights and business strategies for clients in 100 countries. Kantar is part of WPP and its services are employed by over half of the Fortune Top 500 companies. For further information, please visit us at www.kantar.com Twitter: Facebook: Google +: LinkedIn
News Article | July 31, 2016
Online spending on films, music and games in the UK has bounced back, thanks to Star Wars: The Force Awakens and consumers buying the back catalogues of David Bowie and Prince. More than a third of shoppers in the physical entertainment market bought a product with the online retailer Amazon in the 12 weeks to 3 June. This helped the company to achieve its highest ever share of spending on DVDs, Blu-rays, CDs and games outside the Christmas period, according to Kantar Worldpanel. Online sales of physical entertainment products stuttered during 2015 as the high street, led by HMV, made a fightback. Consumers, however, have turned back to Amazon and other online sites because of the size of their catalogue as they look for classic songs and albums by Prince and David Bowie, who both died this year. Prince sold more albums during the 12-week period than any artist apart from Adele. Sales of CDs more than six months old grew by 9% year on year, helped by Prince and Bowie. No music titles, however, made it into the top 30 entertainment products for the quarter. Following its box office success, the latest Star Wars movie was the bestselling title in the entertainment market, with 1.8 million shoppers picking up a copy of the DVD or Blu-ray. Tesco was the big winner, taking nearly a third of all spending on the product. Tesco’s overall sales fell 0.5% in the entertainment sector, meaning its market share dropped slightly to 15.2%. On the high street, HMV’s sales rose 2.3% year on year, increasing its market share from 14% to 16.3%. Amazon’s sales rose 0.5%, increasing its share of spending from 22.5% to 23%. Fiona Keenan, Kantar’s strategic insight director, said: “Star Wars: The Force Awakens has become the biggest Blu-ray film title since Avatar over six years ago and there are signs it has helped get people back into the market – encouraging, given the competition Blu-ray and DVDs face from digital streaming services such as Netflix. “Online spend across the industry has bounced back from declines over the past year and now accounts for over a third of spend – the highest it has been since this time in 2015. “Having the availability of a wide back catalogue means online retailers are extremely well placed to cater to changes in consumer demand, as exemplified by the recent surge in sales of Bowie and Prince albums following the death of both iconic artists earlier this year.”
News Article | February 15, 2017
Apple Finishes 2016 as Top Smartphone Brand in the US NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Feb 8, 2017) - In September 2016, as the world awaited the release of iPhone 7, the anticipated absence of a traditional earphone jack was all anyone was talking about, according to a blog post this week by Lauren Guenveur, Consumer Insight Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. The press warned that this could spell trouble for Apple, and theorized that no one would want a phone without a standard audio jack. "As often happens, buyers demonstrated that the pundits were wrong and Apple was right," Guenveur wrote. "Actual sales numbers for Q4 2016 showed iPhone 7 to be the best-selling phone in the US, Great Britain, Urban China, France, Germany, Japan, and Australia. This boosted Apple's market share higher than during the fourth quarter of 2015 when iPhone 6s was the flagship device." "In an attempt to beat iPhone 7/7 Plus to market, Samsung hurriedly released the Note 7, and it was soon plagued by two different battery issues that ultimately led to its complete recall. As it turned out, the Note 7 problems have not hurt Samsung badly at all. Samsung sales in the US stayed nearly the same year-over-year, and the company remained the second largest brand in the US, with 28.5% of smartphone sales in Q4 2016. The Galaxy S7, which was occasionally mistaken for the Note 7 in some FAA airline safety notices, was the third-best selling device on the market." However, Samsung did not come out completely unaffected, Guenveur added. "Loyalty to the brand in the USA in the fourth quarter was 62%, the lowest level since before the launch of the Galaxy S6 in the first quarter of 2015, when it was 58%," she reported. "The announcement of the Samsung S8 and whatever features it comes with it might be enough to bring these numbers back up, as the Note 7's past difficulties fade from the collective memory." Google achieved a 2% share of smartphone sales with its new Pixel and Pixel XL phones in Q4 2016. Pixel is outselling more established brands in the USA, including Alcatel, HTC, Huawei, and Microsoft. "With Apple and Samsung capturing a combined 73% of US sales, Pixel may not be the predicted iPhone or Samsung killer, but it is certainly giving other struggling Android brands a run for their money. With production of the Pixel 2 rumored to have begun, it will be interesting to watch how Google evolves the Pixel, and how they take on the big competitive 2017 releases, such as the Samsung S8, and whatever name Apple gives its next iPhone," Guenveur said. The full text of Lauren Guenveur's recent blog post can be found here: https://goo.gl/kXMUNF Kantar Worldpanel Comtech also reported today that in the fourth quarter of 2016, iOS continued year-on-year growth across all tracked regions except Urban China. Android gained in most markets, except the US, Great Britain, and Australia. In the US, iOS accounted for 44.4% of smartphone sales in the fourth quarter of 2016, up from 39.1% in the same period of 2015. Android took 54.4% of sales, down 4.7 percentage points from 4Q 2015. "Although Android still has a larger ecosystem, Apple was the top brand in the US and Great Britain for the final quarter of 2016," Lauren Guenveur said. "In EU5, Samsung was first, with Huawei second. In Urban China, Apple was not able to recapture first place, as Huawei continued to hold that spot." iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were the top sellers for the holiday period, netting their highest share since their release in mid-September, and representing 28% of smartphones sold in the fourth quarter. Samsung's decision not to announce the Galaxy S8 at Mobile World Congress 2017 is not expected to have a large impact on sales, as rumors circulate that the launch will be close to the traditional April date that customers have come to anticipate. Smartphone sales were down overall in the last quarter of 2016 compared to the final quarter of 2015, the Kantar report said, adding that as smartphones become commodities, there are fewer compelling reasons to frequently buy a new one even when promotions are plentiful. Note: The Kantar Worldpanel ComTech dataviz can be embedded into online articles for a visual representation of Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Smartphone OS market share data. Click here to copy the embed code. To view the complete global OS data and an optional PDF file, please visit: https://goo.gl/q7IyZM Kantar Worldpanel is the global expert in shoppers' behavior. Through continuous monitoring, advanced analytics, and tailored solutions, Kantar Worldpanel inspires successful decisions by brand owners, retailers, market analysts, and government organizations globally. For more information, please visit: www.kantarworldpanel.com For further information, please visit us at www.kantarworldpanel.com. Twitter: Google+: LinkedIn: RSS: Newsletter:
News Article | February 24, 2017
Even Paddington Bear, it seems, is having a hard time saving his beloved marmalade from an inexorable decline. As the spread’s greatest international ambassador, Paddington has long been an important part of marmalade’s branding process. But a survey has revealed that the once popular spread is now mainly the preserve of older generations, with about 60% of sales going to the over-65s and just 1% to those under 28. The overwhelming majority of purchases – 89% – were by empty-nesters and retirees, according to the survey of 30,000 UK households by consumer researchers Kantar Worldpanel. While images of the Peruvian bear, known for keeping an emergency stash of marmalade sandwiches under his red felt hat, feature on leading brand Robertson’s Golden Shred – after his brief defection to savoury spread Marmite – overall sales of the bittersweet citrus spread have fallen by 4.7% since 2013, while chocolate and peanut butter spread each increased by 56%. And yet there may be reason for hope among aficionados. Paddington still has a little impact: the release of his eponymous film in 2014 led to a slight lift, which may be replicated by its sequel, out this year. And while sales may be down, marmalade is enjoying a renaissance among artisan producers and even drinks distillers. The World’s Original Marmalade awards has received record entries and its taste is finding favour with vodka drinkers. If marmalade’s place in the pantheon really is at risk, it would mean the end of a long culinary tradition. Marmalade in Britain dates to at least the Tudors – Henry VIII received a box as a gift, though this was a quince-based hard paste. The name originates from marmelo, Portuguese for quince, while the Romans and Greeks enjoyed a forerunner, preserved quince in honey. The provenance of the chunky orange marmalade complete with peel we know today may originate in Scotland. There is an apocryphal story of a storm-damaged ship carrying Seville oranges seeking refuge in Dundee harbour where local merchant James Keiller bought the oranges cheaply, after which his wife, Janet, made a preserve and established a business. However it came about, the Keillers established the first marmalade plant. “The first jar of marmalade as we know it today, which is the pulp with the peel, was first made in Dundee in 1797 by the Keiller family,” said Martin Grant, managing director at Mackays, which makes original Dundee orange marmalade using traditional copper-bottomed open pans. Bucking the trend, Mackays – the third biggest brand in the UK and largest exported marmalade brand , selling to 93 markets globally – grew by 12% in the UK last year, said Grant. “Provenance and taste are key,” he said, arguing good quality marmalade, like fine wine or cheese, is appreciated best by the older, more sophisticated palate. Marmalade is not for children, despite Paddington, he said. “I think Paddington is a lovely, quizzical character, and he does a great job for marmalade, and we adore him. But I think if you’re too young and you taste marmalade – think how much sugar is eaten by the younger generation – it’s a bit of a shock to the system”. Britain’s love of marmalade began with the Victorians who saw it as a status symbol. Through colonial administrators, who packed it in their travel trunks, it reached all corners of the British empire. In the Victorian dinner party era bringing Seville oranges as a gift was the equivalent of posting Instagram pictures from desirable locations – “saying look how cool I am, I went to Seville and brought back these oranges,” according to James Chase, brand ambassador for Chase Distillery, maker of marmalade vodka. Started and run by his father, William Chase, at the family’s Herefordshire farm, the company’s marmalade vodka was inspired by his grandmother’s homemade marmalade. “We love to shake it up with ice, strain it into a martini glass, garnish it with orange peel – a breakfast martini,” said Chase, whose family company also founded Tyrrells English Crisps. Today it is one of their bestsellers and is found in some of the world’s top bars. “Marmalade has always had these trends,” said Chase. “One day it’s the talk of the fashion industry, like when Victoria Beckham was craving it during her pregnancy. The next it’s a stodgy old jam that’s been forgotten about. “But I think, made well, marmalade is such a British classic that it will always stand the test of time”. Jane Hasell-McCosh, who 12 years ago started the World’s Original Marmalade awards and festival at Dalemain, a Georgian mansion just outside Penrith in Cumbria, said sales and interest in artisan marmalade had increased year on-year. The awards started with 60 jars, “and now we are up to 3,000 this year”. Entrants come from all over the world. “We got a lot from Japan this year and it was fascinating how many different citrus fruits there are in Japan that I’d never heard of,” said McCosh. The awards ceremony is on 18 March. Her favourite category is a marmalade to be eaten with savoury food. “It still had to be dominantly citrus, but it could be eaten with fur, fish or fowl. It has been the most innovative and interesting category,” she said. No vinegar, she stressed, otherwise it’s not marmalade, it’s chutney. Marmalade has woven its way into the fabric of British life. A “marmalade dropper”, for instance, is a term used to describe a newspaper story guaranteed to shock or surprise readers over breakfast. “In the second world war, it is said, Winston Churchill insisted we must keep the marmalade orange boats coming,” said McCosh, “because, culturally, it would keep our morale up”. She believes her awards have helped contribute to a renaissance in artisan marmalade, and that the market for traditional, artisan spreads from small producers is on the up. As for the younger generation: “I’ve always thought marmalade is quite a sophisticated taste. It’s not sweet, it’s quite bitter, and children are very tempted by sweet things.” Having said that, more and more young people are entering the awards. “We have got grannies and granddaughters. People are sharing the making of marmalade between generations. I don’t accept it is dying. We are engulfed in marmalade this year.”
News Article | October 28, 2016
Retailers are already being forced to cut the price of their winter ranges as yet another mild autumn wilts demand on the high street for warmclothing. Department store chains House of Fraser and Debenhams are offering up to 30% off coats, knitwear and boots this weekend, forcing rival John Lewis into a round of price matching due to its Never Knowingly Undersold price promise. Other stores ranging from Hobbs to Phase Eight and Monsoon are also trying to drum up business with selected discounts, while Whistles is offering up to £50 off coats and knitwear. David McCorquodale, head of retail at KPMG, said retailers were trying to kickstart spending as shoppers were holding back on purchases in the weeks leading up to Black Friday, the online shopping bonanza at the end of November. “Last year, Black Friday was bigger than Christmas, with promotions running over four days, so people are holding off spending and that diminishes retailers’ sales in the weeks before and after,” he said. Fashion retailers are struggling to win over shoppers at a time when spending their disposable income on leisure activities such as eating out and holidays has become more popular. Analysts at Kantar Worldpanel said earlier this month that spending on clothes and footwear in the UK had dropped to its lowest level in seven years. Its figures showed that shoppers spent £700m less on clothing, shoes and accessories in the year to 25 September than they had during the previous 12 months. On Tuesday, Debenhams said its clothing business had fared slightly better than the 4% decline seen across the market in the past six months as growth in holiday clothing, including swimwear, and outfits for special occasions rose, while sales of everyday clothing slid. “Maybe gone are the days of just buying. You have got to really want something to buy,” said Suzanne Harlow, the group’s trading director. The weather has not been kind to fashion industry executives in recent years, with mild winters followed by erratic summer temperatures making it difficult to persuade Britons to update their wardrobes at the start of a new season. However, some of the malaise in spending was self-inflicted, said McCorquodale: “Fashion retailers have tried to straddle the seasons, but have not done a particularly good job of it. A lot of the fashion has just not been that inspirational.” The cold snap earlier this month provided clothing chains with a much-needed boost, according to the weekly high street sales tracker produced by advisory firm BDO, which monitors the performance of mid-sized fashion chains. However, its latest data shows sales are once again falling, with like-for-likes down 1.21% in the week to Sunday 23 October. “While some of the upscale and bespoke fashion retailers enjoyed moderate boosts, this was offset by declining sales amongst mid-range fashion retailers and across the peer group,” said BDO. Analysts are keenly watching how clothing market leader Marks & Spencer reacts to the tough trading environment. Its new boss, Steve Rowe, appears to be holding his nerve, with the most notable winter promotion being a chance to buy a wool scarf for £5 when customers spend £40. Rowe is trying to wean the retailer off an over-reliance on discounting after more than 40% of its clothing was sold on promotion last year.
News Article | February 15, 2017
Samsung Maintains US Market Share of 28.5%, Mostly Unscathed by Note 7 Issues LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - Feb 8, 2017) - The latest smartphone OS sales data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows that in the fourth quarter of 2016, iOS continued year-on-year growth across all tracked regions except Urban China. Android gained in most markets, except the US, Great Britain, and Australia. "Although Android still has a larger ecosystem, Apple was the top brand in the US and Great Britain for the final quarter of 2016," said Lauren Guenveur, Consumer Insight Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. "In EU5, Samsung was first, with Huawei second. In Urban China, Apple was not able to recapture first place, as Huawei continued to hold that spot." In the US, iOS accounted for 44.4% of smartphone sales in the fourth quarter of 2016, up from 39.1% in the same period of 2015. Android took 54.4% of sales, down 4.7 percentage points from 4Q 2015. "iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were the top sellers for the holiday period, netting their highest share since their release in mid-September, and representing 28% of smartphones sold in the fourth quarter," Guenveur added. "Despite the expected fallout from Samsung's problems with the Galaxy Note 7, the company maintained a share of 28.5%, down only 0.9 percentage points from one year earlier. Samsung's Galaxy S7 flagship device, announced at Mobile World Congress 2016, was the third best-selling phone in the fourth quarter. Samsung's decision to not announce the Galaxy S8 at Mobile World Congress 2017 is not expected to have a large impact on sales, as rumors circulate that the launch will be close to the traditional April date that customers have come to anticipate." Android accounted for 50.6% of smartphone sales in Great Britain in the fourth quarter of 2016 vs. iOS at 47.6%. This marked a slight decline for Android from 51.9% in the same period the previous year, while iOS grew nine percentage points. "Apple achieved its highest loyalty ever in Britain, with 96% of those Apple owners who replaced their phones buying another iPhone," reported Dominic Sunnebo, Business Unit Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Europe. "More than 50% of iPhone 7 buyers were upgrading from iPhone 6 as the brand's lifecycle continues to hover around 24 months. Beyond Apple and Samsung's combined 73% share of smartphone sales in the fourth quarter of 2016, the market remained fragmented. Brands like OnePlus, Alcatel, and Google experienced an increase from the prior year, while big names like Sony, LG, and HTC declined." Android accounted for 80.7% of Q4 smartphone sales in Urban China, an increase of 9.3 percentage points year-over-year. iOS made up 19.1% of smartphone sales, down from 27.1% in the same period a year earlier. "iPhone 7 remained the top-selling model in the Chinese market in the last quarter of 2016 at 6.8%. However, its share was smaller than last year's iPhone 6s, which represented 10.5% of sales in the fourth quarter of 2015," said Tamsin Timpson, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Asia. "Looking at the broader market, there was a shift in popularity. The Top 10 list of smartphone models sold in Urban China in 2015 consisted of just three manufacturers Apple, Huawei, and Xiaomi. In 2016, a fourth vendor was added to that list -- Oppo." Smartphone sales were down overall in the last quarter of 2016 compared to the final quarter of 2015, Guenveur pointed out. "Considering iPhone 7's top-seller status, the absence of a round headphone jack was not a big issue for consumers -- and the fallout from the Galaxy Note 7 battery problems was not a significant factor either. As smartphones become commodities, there are fewer compelling reasons to frequently buy a new one, even when holiday discounts are plentiful. Technology continuously moves forward, and while smartphones remain at the center of many new technologies like VR, connected home, and IoT, they are no longer the most exciting devices in the household," she concluded. Note: The Kantar Worldpanel ComTech dataviz can be embedded into online articles for a visual representation of Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Smartphone OS market share data. Click here to copy the embed code. Kantar Worldpanel ComTech's smartphone OS market share data provides the media and businesses with access to the most up-to-date sales and market share figures for the major smartphone operating systems. This information is based on research extracted from the Kantar Worldpanel ComTech global consumer panel. ComTech is the largest continuous consumer research mobile phone tracking panel of its kind in the world, conducting over one million interviews per year in Europe alone. ComTech tracks mobile phone behavior -- including phone purchases, bills/airtime, source of purchase, and usage. It also delivers additional data to promote an understanding of the drivers of share changes, and consumer insight market dynamics. All consumer data in this release excludes enterprise sales. About Kantar Worldpanel Kantar Worldpanel is the global expert in shoppers' behaviour. Through continuous monitoring, advanced analytics and tailored solutions, Kantar Worldpanel inspires successful decisions by brand owners, retailers, market analysts and government organisations globally. With over 60 years' experience, a team of 3,500, and services covering 60 countries directly or through partners, Kantar Worldpanel turns purchase behaviour into competitive advantage in markets as diverse as FMCG, impulse products, fashion, baby, telecommunications and entertainment, among many others. For further information, please visit us at www.kantarworldpanel.com. Twitter: Google+: LinkedIn: RSS: Newsletter: Kantar is one of the world's leading data, insight and consultancy companies. Working together across the whole spectrum of research and consulting disciplines, its specialist brands, employing 30,000 people, provide inspirational insights and business strategies for clients in 100 countries. Kantar is part of WPP and its services are employed by over half of the Fortune Top 500 companies. For further information, please visit us at www.kantar.com Twitter: Facebook: Google +: LinkedIn
News Article | September 29, 2016
Sales at HMV went backwards last year as it retreated from the challenging video games market, and Britons’ move away from physical CD, films and games collections continued. HMV turned over £325m in the year to 2 January compared with £366m in 2015, a figure that was bolstered by the inclusion of an extra week’s trading. Despite the decline, HMV chair, Paul McGowan, described the figures as “encouraging”, pointing to market-share gains made in physical music and film sales. “We are very pleased to be approaching our fourth anniversary since we acquired HMV and these encouraging results mirror the exciting year we have witnessed,” said McGowan. McGowan said overall sales had been “in line with budget”, with the decrease down to a 53-week trading period in 2015 as well as the decision to reduce shelf space devoted to video games. The toughness of the games market has been well documented by specialist Game Digital, which has issued a profit warning every Christmas – which in common with HMV is its most lucrative time of year – since returning to the stock exchange in 2014. HMV was bought out of administration by restructuring firm Hilco in 2013. The entertainment chain, established in 1921, had been felled by the financial squeeze created by high debt levels and falling sales. Hilco’s £50m buyout salvaged just over half the HMV chain which now trades from around 120 stores. McGowan, also chief executive of Hilco, said HMV increased its share of the physical music market from 26.7% in 2014 to 27.7% in 2015. Its share of the DVD market also increased from 20.1% to 21.2%. Vinyl sales at established stores surged more than 50% as Britons rekindle their relationship with their record players, HMV said. More recently Hilco was involved in the BHS store closure programme. According to Kantar Worldpanel, the market for physical music, video and games declined by 8.3% to £2.1bn in 2015. The most recent quarterly figures for the entertainment market show it continuing to contract at a similar rate, down 8.1% in the 12 weeks to 3 July. The accounts filed at Companies House show HMV Retail made a pre-tax loss of £8.8m after expenses that included £10.3m of payments to sister companies. Top line operating operating profits were £11.7m, down from £15.2m in the previous year. Among the biggest related party transactions is a £7m payment to Hilco company Goodmans Capital Investments, comprising a £6m loan repayment as well as £1.1m of interest. HMV relaunched online last June and McGowan said the site was enjoying strong growth, pulling in around 1m visitors per month. It has also started selling products such as speakers and turntables online, with the latter enabling it to cash in on the resurgence of vinyl. According to the most recent figures from Kantar Worldpanel, HMV increased its share of the physical entertainment market by 2.3 percentage points to 16.3% in the three months to 3 July compared with the same period a year ago. However, its share was down on the previous quarter’s high of 16.9% as Britons jumped online to buy Star Wars: The Force Awakens and shop the back catalogues of the late David Bowie and Prince.