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Carpets and Floorcoverings - UK - May 2011

  • The economic downturn, coupled with low levels of consumer confidence and the reticence of mortgage companies to lend led to a slowdown in housing transactions. During 2010 there were only 884,000 housing transactions, around half the level of 2006, but 4.4% ahead of 2009.
  • In the research for this report, three in ten consumers agreed that they would only replace the carpet or flooring if they redecorated the rest of the room, but at the same time the hassle of replacing the floorcoverings is a factor which puts off almost a quarter of respondents. And redecorating is an activity which is often done within a short time from moving house. So the downturn in the housing market has played a big part in reducing demand for carpets.
  • This report examines the market for carpets and floorcoverings and looks at the key factors that shape demand. Some of the factors discussed include:

Has the reduced level of housing transactions in the UK had a direct impact on demand for carpets and floorcoverings?

Raw material prices are rising, along with other operating costs, but are consumers resistant to paying higher prices?

Is online browsing and buying having an impact on sales of carpets and floorcoverings?

Are environmental concerns shaping consumer choice of carpets and floorcoverings?

As more people buy flats and apartments how will this affect demand for carpets and floorcoverings?

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definitions
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • The market
              • Figure 1: Consumer spending on carpets and floorcoverings, 2005-15
            • Weak market conditions prevail
              • Carpets two thirds of spending
                • Figure 2: Consumer spending on flooring products, by category, 2010
              • Market factors
                • Slowdown in house moves depresses demand
                  • Figure 3: Number of UK residential property transactions, seasonally adjusted, by quarter, 2006-11
                • More households but smaller dwellings
                  • Growth in 25-34 age band positive for sales
                    • Lower interest in the home
                      • Companies, brands and innovation
                        • Manufacturing fragmented
                          • Innovation influenced by style, technology and environmental issues
                            • Retail distribution
                              • Figure 4: UK retail sales of carpets and smooth floorcoverings, by outlet type, 2008 and 2010
                            • Carpetright is the largest specialist
                              • Small advertising support
                                • The consumer
                                  • Fewer consumers buying carpets and floorcoverings
                                    • Figure 5: Number of households purchasing carpets, wooden floors and other floorcoverings/tiles, 2006-10
                                  • Price-savvy customers shop around
                                    • Ownership of flooring
                                      • Figure 6: Types of flooring, by room, selected rooms, April 2011
                                    • Choice dominated by practicalities
                                      • What we think
                                      • Issues in the Market

                                          • Has the reduced level of housing transactions in the UK had a direct impact on demand for carpets and floorcoverings?
                                            • Raw material prices are rising, along with other operating costs, but are consumers resistant to paying higher prices?
                                              • Is online browsing and buying having an impact on sales of carpets and floorcoverings?
                                                • Are environmental concerns shaping consumer choice of carpets and floorcoverings?
                                                  • As more people buy flats and apartments how will this affect demand for carpets and floorcoverings?
                                                  • Future Opportunities

                                                      • Trend: Home as a Pension
                                                        • Trend: Trial Without Error
                                                        • Internal Market Environment

                                                          • Key points
                                                            • Evidence of waning interest in the home
                                                              • Figure 7: Attitudes towards the home, 2006-10
                                                            • Dust mites and asthma
                                                              • Figure 8: Allergies prone to, 2006-10
                                                            • Prices of carpets and other floor coverings are on the rise
                                                              • Figure 9: Annual change in consumer prices for carpets and other floorcoverings, Jan 2008-Dec 10
                                                            • Overseas trade
                                                              • Figure 10: Overseas trade in carpets and other floorcoverings, 2006-10
                                                              • Figure 11: Carpet/floor coverings Import sources, 2006-10
                                                            • Noise nuisance with hard floors
                                                              • Environmental concerns
                                                                • Fashion trends
                                                                • Broader Market Environment

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Hard times boost savings ratio
                                                                      • Figure 12: GDP, PDI, consumer expenditure and savings, at current prices, 2005-15
                                                                    • Slow housing market
                                                                      • Figure 13: Number of UK residential property transactions, seasonally adjusted, by quarter, 2006-11
                                                                    • Consumer confidence
                                                                      • Figure 14: Trends in statements relating to the economic downturn, April 2011 and February 2009
                                                                    • Growing number of UK households
                                                                      • Figure 15: UK households, by size, 2005-15
                                                                    • Population structure is changing
                                                                      • Figure 16: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2005-15
                                                                    • Upwardly mobile population
                                                                      • Figure 17: Forecast adult population trends, by socio-economic group, 2005-15
                                                                  • Competitive Context

                                                                    • Key points
                                                                      • The market for carpets and floorcoverings in context
                                                                        • Figure 18: UK retail value sales of competitive markets, 2006-10
                                                                      • How retail has fared
                                                                        • Figure 19: Comparison of retail sales, at current prices (non-seasonally adjusted), 2006-10
                                                                        • Figure 20: Comparison of annual quarterly changes in retail sales, by category, at current prices (non-seasonally adjusted), 2007-10
                                                                      • Consumer spending priorities
                                                                        • Figure 21: Expenditure priorities, 2007-10
                                                                    • Strengths and Weaknesses in the Market

                                                                      • Strengths
                                                                        • Weaknesses
                                                                        • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • Digital printing brings realistic look to laminate
                                                                              • Sustainability moves up the agenda
                                                                                • Cutting noise problems in homes
                                                                                  • New materials and easier cleaning
                                                                                    • Focusing on key trends and customisation
                                                                                      • Plenty of new releases and new products
                                                                                      • Market Size and Segmentation

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Weak demand leads to challenging market conditions
                                                                                            • Figure 22: UK retail value sales of carpets and floorcoverings, 2006-15
                                                                                          • Segment performance
                                                                                            • Figure 23: UK retail value of carpets and flooring by segment, 2006-10
                                                                                          • Forecast
                                                                                            • Figure 24: Consumer spending on carpets and floorcoverings, 2005-15
                                                                                        • Companies and Products

                                                                                          • Major players
                                                                                            • Axminster Carpets
                                                                                                • Figure 25: Financial performance of Axminster Carpets Ltd, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                              • Brintons
                                                                                                  • Figure 26: Financial performance of Brintons Ltd, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                                • Cormar Carpets
                                                                                                    • Figure 27: Financial performance of Greenwood & Coope Ltd, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                                  • Forbo Flooring
                                                                                                      • Figure 28: Financial performance of Forbo Flooring UK Ltd, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                                    • Kronospan
                                                                                                        • Figure 29: Financial performance of Kronospan Holdings Ltd, 2008-09
                                                                                                      • Ulster Carpets
                                                                                                          • Figure 30: Financial performance of Ulster Carpet Mills (Holdings) Ltd, 2009 and 2010
                                                                                                        • Unilin
                                                                                                            • Figure 31: Financial performance of Mohawk Industries Inc, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                                            • Figure 32: Financial performance of Unilin, 2008 and 2009
                                                                                                          • Victoria Carpets
                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Financial performance of Victoria Plc, 2009 and 2010
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Six months financial performance of Victoria Plc, 2009 and 2010
                                                                                                            • Other carpet manufacturers
                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Selected other companies in the floorcoverings market, February 2011
                                                                                                          • Channels to Market

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Independents dominate
                                                                                                                • Figure 36: UK retail sales of carpets and smooth floorcoverings, by outlet type, 2008-10
                                                                                                              • This is a market for specialists
                                                                                                                • Independents losing share
                                                                                                                  • Carpetright forges ahead with e-commerce
                                                                                                                    • Repositioning of a smaller Allied Carpets
                                                                                                                      • Smooth flooring specialists
                                                                                                                        • DIY sheds stronger in smooth flooring
                                                                                                                          • Department stores cushioned
                                                                                                                            • Headlam leading supplier to independents
                                                                                                                              • Expanding internet presence
                                                                                                                              • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                  • Overall advertising spend is down
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 37: Main media advertising expenditure – carpets & soft floorcoverings, and hard flooring, 2007-10
                                                                                                                                  • Carpetright dominates spend
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 38: Main media advertising expenditure on carpets and soft floorcoverings, and hard flooring, by advertiser, 2007-10
                                                                                                                                  • Press advertising takes the lion’s share
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 39: Main media advertising expenditure on carpets & soft floorcoverings, and hard flooring, by media type, 2007-10
                                                                                                                                  • Autumn boost for advertisers
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Average monthly spending on main media advertising on carpets & soft floorcoverings, and hard flooring, 2007-10
                                                                                                                                  • Fun on the floor
                                                                                                                                  • The Consumer – Ownership and Purchasing Patterns

                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                      • Slump in numbers making purchases
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 41: Ownership and purchasing of carpets, wooden floors and other floorcoverings/tiles, 2006-10
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 42: Number of households purchasing carpets, wooden floors and other floorcoverings/tiles, 2006-10
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 43: Purchasing of carpets, by socio-economic group, 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Five-year cool-down in demand for smooth floors
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 44: Purchasing of wooden floors, by lifestage, 2010
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 45: Purchasing of other floorcoverings/tiles, by age, 2010
                                                                                                                                        • Types of flooring in home
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 46: Types of flooring in home, April 2011
                                                                                                                                        • Types of flooring by room
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 47: Types of flooring by room, April 2011
                                                                                                                                        • Carpets dominate living space
                                                                                                                                          • A quarter of 25-44s have laminates in the lounge
                                                                                                                                            • Smooths for kitchens and bathrooms
                                                                                                                                              • Wood appeals to younger customers
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 48: Ownership of vinyl, wood and rugs, by age, April 2011
                                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Factors Influencing Choice

                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                • Factors influencing choice of carpets
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 49: Any factors important in choice of carpets, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 50: Factors important in choice of carpets, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Getting the right deal
                                                                                                                                                    • Easy care
                                                                                                                                                      • Guarantee of durability
                                                                                                                                                        • Free fitting is a draw
                                                                                                                                                          • They want to touch and feel
                                                                                                                                                            • See it at home first
                                                                                                                                                              • Weave and tuft
                                                                                                                                                                • Blank canvas
                                                                                                                                                                  • What triggers a new purchase?
                                                                                                                                                                    • Consumers appear unconcerned about environmental factors
                                                                                                                                                                      • Factors influencing choice of smooth flooring
                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 51: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 52: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                      • Smooth floors easy to clean
                                                                                                                                                                        • Guarantees really matter
                                                                                                                                                                          • Price and special deals
                                                                                                                                                                            • Fit it yourself?
                                                                                                                                                                              • Low interest in environmental factors
                                                                                                                                                                              • Consumer – Attitudes Towards Buying Carpets/Floorcoverings

                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Attitudes towards buying carpets and floorcoverings
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 53: Attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Carpets and floorcoverings as part of the decor
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Getting the right price
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Buying to last
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Seeking good advice
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Older shoppers prefer independents
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Will they buy online?
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Cluster analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 54: Customer typologies for carpets and floorcoverings, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Indifferent (37%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • What influences them?
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 55: Factors influencing choice of carpets, by customer type, indifferent, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 56: Factors influencing choice of smooth flooring, by customer type, indifferent, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Decorators (24%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • What influences them?
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 57: Factors influencing choice of carpets, by customer type, decorators, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 58: Factors influencing choice of smooth flooring, by customer type, decorators, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Quality seekers (21%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • What influences them?
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 59: Factors influencing choice of carpets, by customer type, quality seekers, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 60: Factors influencing choice of smooth flooring, by customer type, quality seekers, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Online researchers (19%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • What influences them?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 61: Factors influencing choice of carpets, by customer type, online researchers, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 62: Factors influencing choice of smooth flooring, by customer type, online researchers, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix – The Consumer – Ownership and Purchasing Patterns

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 63: Types of flooring, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 64: Types of flooring in ‘Lounge/Sitting room’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 65: Types of flooring in ‘Dining room’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 66: Types of flooring in ‘Kitchen’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 67: Types of flooring in ‘Bedroom 1’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 68: Types of flooring in ‘Bedroom 2’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 69: Types of flooring in ‘Bedroom 3’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 70: Types of flooring in ‘Bedroom 4’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 71: Types of flooring in ‘Bathroom 1’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 72: Types of flooring in ‘Hall/Stairs’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 73: Types of flooring in ‘Study/Home office’, by demographics, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix – The Consumer – Factors Influencing Choice

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 74: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, by most popular attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 75: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, by next most popular attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 76: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, by other attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 78: Factors considered important in choosing carpets, by least popular factors, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 79: Factors considered important in choosing of hard/smooth flooring, most popular factors, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 80: Factors considered important in choosing of hard/smooth flooring, next five factors, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix – Attitudes Towards Buying Carpets/Floorcoverings

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 81: Most popular attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 82: Next most popular attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 83: Other attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 84: Target groups, by demographics, March 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Cluster analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 85: Attitudes towards buying carpets/floorcoverings, by target groups, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 86: Types of flooring by room, by target groups, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 87: Factors important in choice of carpets, by target groups, April 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 88: Factors considered important in choice of hard/smooth flooring, by target groups, April 2011

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Aldi Stores Ltd (UK & Ireland)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Allied Floors Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Argos
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Axminster Carpets Holdings Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Balta Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Bank of England
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • British Market Research Bureau (BMRB)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • British Sky Broadcasting Group plc (BSkyB)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Brockway Carpets Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Carbon Trust
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Carpetright UK
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Co-operative Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Cormar Carpets Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Council of Mortgage Lenders
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Dutton Carpets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Facebook, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Floors 2 go
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Focus
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Forest Stewardship Council
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Freeview
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Government Actuary's Department (GAD)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Home Retail Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Homebase Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • IKEA
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • J. Sainsbury
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • John Lewis Partnership
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Kantar Media
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Kingfisher Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Kingfisher UK & Ireland
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Kronospan Holdings Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Laura Ashley Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Lidl (UK)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Maytag Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • MFI Furniture Group Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • mmO2 plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Mohawk Industries Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Lottery Commission
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Netto Foodstores Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Orange plc (UK)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Storey Carpets Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • T-Mobile (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Topps Tiles (UK)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Travis Perkins Retail
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • United Carpets Group plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Victoria Carpets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Victoria Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Virgin Media Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Virgin Mobile
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Vivienne Westwood Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Vodafone Group Plc (UK)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Waitrose Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Wm Morrison Supermarkets

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Carpets and Floorcoverings - UK - May 2011

                                                                                                                                                                                                                £1,750.00 (Excl.Tax)