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Bathrooms and Bathroom Accessories - UK - September 2019

Covered in this report

This report focuses on bathroom retailing in the UK, looking at consumer spending on fixtures, fittings, furniture and accessories for bathrooms for domestic premises, either by end users or small professional installers on behalf of end users. It looks at DIY retailers, bathroom specialists and online specialist retailers, as well as other general retailers.

“People’s priorities for bathrooms focus on updating tired and worn-out bathrooms and making their homes more enjoyable places to live. They want to inject personality and interest into their décor. This encourages them to visit inspiring showrooms and browse for ideas online. Many see a new bathroom as an investment that adds value to their homes, something which can encourage them to be freer with their spending plans. Bathroom retailers also have an opportunity to persuade people to spend more by solving real-life problems, such as incorporating more storage as well as making savings on energy and water usage.”

- Jane Westgarth, Senior Retail Analyst

This report will look at the following areas:

  • How Homebase will develop Bathstore
  • Will more bathroom sales go online?
  • Is there scope for new entrants to the bathroom market?

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Robust market conditions and slow growth
              • 13% growth from 2019-24
                • Figure 1: Consumer spend on bathrooms and bathroom accessories, 2014-24
              • Accessories growing share of bathroom spend
                • Figure 2: Consumer spend on bathrooms, by category, 2014-24
              • More showers instead of baths
                • Figure 3: Market for bathroom fittings and accessories, by segment, 2019
              • Changes to channels of distribution due to Bathstore acquisition by Homebase
                • Figure 4: Distribution of bathroom fittings and accessories, 2018
              • Almost 20% of the market bought online
                • Key drivers of demand for bathrooms
                  • Slowdown in housing transactions
                    • 1.8% growth in household numbers between 2014 and 2019
                      • Average bathroom in new builds is 16% smaller than houses built in the 1970s
                        • Companies and brands
                          • Discounting has driven demand but dented profits
                            • Changes at Homebase
                              • Administration and new ownership for Bathstore
                                • B&Q sees sliding profits
                                  • Travis Perkins selling Wickes to focus on trade
                                    • Growth for trade-facing businesses
                                      • Figure 5: Share of consumer spending on bathrooms, by retailer, 2014 and 2018
                                    • The consumer
                                      • 58% of homes have one bathroom
                                        • Figure 6: Bathrooms in the UK's homes, July 2019
                                      • 8 million homes have a separate toilet
                                        • Figure 7: Separate toilets in the UK's homes, July 2019
                                      • 45% of homes undertook bathroom projects in the last three years
                                        • Figure 8: Bathroom refits and installations in the last 3 years, July 2019
                                      • 8% of homes added a new bathroom in the last three years
                                        • Figure 9: Additional bathrooms and bathroom refits, July 2019
                                      • Complete refits account for a fifth of bathrooms done at the household’s own expense
                                        • Figure 10: Bathroom refits and installations, done at the household's expense, July 2019
                                      • Getting up to date is the key motivator for a bathroom makeover
                                        • Figure 11: Priorities for bathroom refits or installations, July 2019
                                      • B&Q is the most used retailer for bathrooms
                                        • Figure 12: Retailers used for bathrooms, July 2019
                                      • Shoppers are motivated by special offers and retailers with showrooms
                                        • 18% want the retailer to arrange installation
                                          • Figure 13: Factors influencing choice of retailer, July 2019
                                        • 37% want water-saving features
                                          • 14% are interested in accessible features
                                            • Figure 14: Interest in innovation, July 2019
                                          • What we think
                                          • Issues and Insights

                                            • How Homebase will develop Bathstore
                                              • The facts
                                                • The implications
                                                  • Will more bathroom sales go online?
                                                    • The facts
                                                      • The implications
                                                        • Is there scope for new entrants to the bathroom market?
                                                          • The facts
                                                            • The implications
                                                            • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                                              • Robust market conditions and slow growth
                                                                • 13% growth from 2019-24
                                                                  • Accessories growing share of bathroom spend
                                                                    • More showers instead of baths
                                                                      • Acquisition of Bathstore by Homebase impacts channels of distribution
                                                                        • 19% of the market bought online
                                                                          • Key drivers of demand
                                                                            • Slowdown in housing transactions
                                                                              • 1.8% growth in household numbers over 2014-19
                                                                                • Average bathroom in new builds is 16% smaller than homes built in the 1970s
                                                                                • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                  • Difficult market conditions in 2018-19
                                                                                    • Figure 15: Consumer spending on bathrooms, 2014-24
                                                                                  • Sluggish performance after accounting for inflation
                                                                                    • Figure 16: Consumer spending on bathroom accessories, 2014-24
                                                                                  • Forecast methodology
                                                                                  • Market Segmentation

                                                                                    • Accessories to account for 13% market share by 2024
                                                                                      • Figure 17: Consumer spending on bathroom fittings, furniture and accessories, 2014-24
                                                                                    • Showers and cabinet furniture popular in today’s bathrooms
                                                                                      • Figure 18: Market for bathroom fittings and accessories, by segment, 2019
                                                                                    • Trend for fitted or modular cabinet furniture
                                                                                      • Strong demand for showers
                                                                                        • Design detail in shower heads
                                                                                          • Adding to the style
                                                                                            • Innovation in WCs
                                                                                              • Larger mirrors
                                                                                                • Automation and smart bathrooms
                                                                                                • Channels to Market

                                                                                                  • The DIY sector is shrinking
                                                                                                    • 19% of all spending now online
                                                                                                      • Figure 19: Distribution of bathroom fittings and accessories, 2019
                                                                                                  • Market Drivers

                                                                                                    • Showering is more popular than taking baths
                                                                                                      • Figure 20: Showering and bathing, December 2018
                                                                                                    • Showers are relaxing and refreshing
                                                                                                      • Figure 21: Triggers for shower use, February 2019
                                                                                                    • Triggers for bath use
                                                                                                      • Figure 22: Triggers for bath use, February 2019
                                                                                                    • Around half of UK households have water meters
                                                                                                      • Europe-wide water and energy labelling
                                                                                                        • Figure 23: Water label, 2019
                                                                                                      • Manufacturers are developing water-saving products
                                                                                                        • Slowdown in housing transactions
                                                                                                            • Figure 24: UK housing transactions, by country, 2016-19
                                                                                                          • More than half as many rent privately as own with a mortgage
                                                                                                            • Figure 25: UK households, by tenure, 2014 and 2019
                                                                                                          • Rising confidence about financial situations helps buoy home spending
                                                                                                            • Figure 26: Trends in how respondents would describe their financial situation, 2015-19
                                                                                                          • Trends for living spaces to be smaller
                                                                                                            • Figure 27: Size of bathrooms, by decade, 1930-present day
                                                                                                        • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                          • Significant changes in market shares
                                                                                                            • Collapse of the largest bathroom specialist
                                                                                                              • Changes at Homebase
                                                                                                                • B&Q sees sliding profits
                                                                                                                  • Travis Perkins selling Wickes to focus on trade
                                                                                                                    • Rise of online bathroom specialists
                                                                                                                    • Market Share

                                                                                                                      • Significant changes in market shares
                                                                                                                        • Figure 28: Market share of bathrooms, by selected retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                    • Retailers

                                                                                                                      • Turnover of selected bathroom retailers
                                                                                                                        • Figure 29: Total turnover (excl VAT) of selected bathroom retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                      • Poor profit performance for many of the retailers
                                                                                                                        • Figure 30: Operating profit of selected retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                      • Wide variation in operating margins
                                                                                                                        • Figure 31: Operating margin of selected bathroom retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                      • Bathstore was the largest chain by far
                                                                                                                        • Figure 32: Store numbers for selected bathroom retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                      • Wide variations in sales per outlets
                                                                                                                        • Figure 33: Sales per outlet of selected bathroom retailers, 2014-18
                                                                                                                      • Significant changes among bathroom retailers
                                                                                                                        • Bathstore chain will be much smaller under Homebase ownership
                                                                                                                          • Raft of smaller specialists
                                                                                                                            • Non-specialists
                                                                                                                              • Online bathroom specialists
                                                                                                                                • Victorian Plumbing
                                                                                                                                  • Soak.com
                                                                                                                                    • Other online specialists
                                                                                                                                    • Builders’ Merchants

                                                                                                                                        • Travis Perkins is preparing to sell off its plumbing division
                                                                                                                                          • Graham gains synergies from co-locating stores
                                                                                                                                            • Wolseley focuses on one brand
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Wolseley, new identity, 2018
                                                                                                                                            • Grafton Group’s Plumbase includes bathroom showrooms
                                                                                                                                            • Competitive Strategies

                                                                                                                                              • Installation services
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 35: Who fitted the bathroom?, June 2017
                                                                                                                                              • Homebase and B&Q halted fitting services
                                                                                                                                                • Catering for tradespeople
                                                                                                                                                  • Opening city-based shops
                                                                                                                                                  • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                                                                                                    • John Lewis expands home services capabilities
                                                                                                                                                      • Bathstore concessions to be injected into Homebase
                                                                                                                                                        • Fan with an onboard odour sensor
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 36: Vent-Axia PureAir Sense fan, 2019
                                                                                                                                                        • Geberit teams up with social media influencers
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 37: Geberit, innovators’ microsite, 2019
                                                                                                                                                        • Mira Shower makes water savings
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 38: Mira, award-winning shower, 2019
                                                                                                                                                        • Shared living in micro apartments
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 39: The Collective, shared living, 2019
                                                                                                                                                      • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                                                                                        • £25 million advertising in 2018
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 40: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on bathrooms, 2015-18
                                                                                                                                                        • Companies have large year-on-year changes in adspend
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 41: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on bathrooms, by top 10 advertisers, 2015-18
                                                                                                                                                          • Television takes the highest share of advertising spend
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 42: Media share of above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on bathrooms, 2018
                                                                                                                                                          • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                                                            • 58% of homes have one bathroom
                                                                                                                                                              • 8 million homes have a separate toilet
                                                                                                                                                                • Owner-occupiers are core target customers for bathrooms
                                                                                                                                                                  • Getting up to date is the key motivator for a bathroom makeover
                                                                                                                                                                    • B&Q is the most used retailer for bathrooms
                                                                                                                                                                      • Shoppers are motivated by discounts and special offers
                                                                                                                                                                        • 18% want the retailer to arrange installation
                                                                                                                                                                          • 37% want water-saving features
                                                                                                                                                                            • 14% are interested in accessible features
                                                                                                                                                                            • Presence of Bathrooms in the UK's Homes

                                                                                                                                                                              • The majority of homes have one bathroom
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 43: Bathrooms in the UK's homes, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                            • Separate Toilets in UK Homes

                                                                                                                                                                              • 36% of homes have a separate toilet
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 44: Separate toilets in UK homes, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                            • Bathroom Refits and Installations

                                                                                                                                                                              • 45% of homes undertook bathroom projects in the last three years
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 45: Bathroom refits and installations in the last 3 years, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                              • 8% of homes added a new bathroom in the last three years
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 46: Additional bathrooms and bathroom refits, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                            • Bathroom Refits and Installations at the Household's Expense

                                                                                                                                                                              • 22% of those who paid for the project, refitted the bathroom
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 47: Bathroom refits and installations, done at the household's expense, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                            • Priorities for Bathroom Refits or Installations

                                                                                                                                                                              • Getting up to date is the key motivator for a bathroom makeover
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 48: Priorities for bathroom refits or installations, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                            • Retailers Used for Bathrooms

                                                                                                                                                                              • B&Q is the most used retailer for bathrooms
                                                                                                                                                                                • IKEA has an opportunity to up its game in bathrooms
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 49: Retailers used for bathrooms, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                              • Factors Influencing Choice of Retailer

                                                                                                                                                                                • Shoppers are motivated by special offers and retailers with showrooms
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Online or showrooms
                                                                                                                                                                                    • 18% want the retailer to arrange installation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Factors influencing choice of retailer, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Interest in Innovation

                                                                                                                                                                                    • 37% want water-saving features
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Self-cleaning toilets are a popular idea
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Bathrooms could help refresh muscles
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Personal settings and automation chime with consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Catering for an ageing population
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 51: Interest in innovation, July 2019
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                                                              • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 52: Consumer spending on bathroom fittings and furniture, chart, 2014-24
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 53: Consumer spending on bathroom fittings and furniture, data, 2014-24
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 54: Consumer spending on bathroom accessories, chart, 2014-24
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 55: Consumer spending on bathroom accessories, data, 2014-24
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Forecast methodology

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bathrooms and Bathroom Accessories - UK - September 2019

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