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Retail Reports Q1 2016

Welcome to the first Retail Report of 2016! If you want to find out how the Belgian non-food market performed in the first quarter of 2016, then stay tuned. 

Well, Belgian retail didn’t get off to a good start in 2016. Sales value of the non-food market declined by 2.5% in the first quarter, compared to the same period last year. 

We note this downward trend in most of the markets we measure. IT and Office Equipment (-7.7%) are worst in class this quarter. The Consumer Electronics market also keeps shrinking (-3.9%), but we are optimistic with the upcoming European Championships, that could have a positive impact on the Consumer Electronics market.  

Additionally, the Telecom business also suffered during the first quarter due to a decrease in smartphones sales (-1.6%). At the same time, we noticed Core Wearables growing strongly, but unfortunately, their market share within Telecom remains limited. The Books market follows this descending trend and suffered a strong decline (-3.3%) as well. The only winning book genre is comic books. And finally, after years of steady growth, even the Small Domestic Appliances market noted a small decrease during this first quarter (-0.7%).  

But luckily, there is also some positive news to share. After a record breaking year, the Major Domestic Appliances market continues to grow and ended the first quarter again with positive numbers (+1.0%).  

Surprisingly, Media & Entertainment managed to grow for the second quarter in a row (+0.6%), and also the Home Improvement market remains stable (+0.1%); nothing won or lost yet in this market. 

So, even though 2016 didn’t start that well, let’s not be too pessimistic: we still have three quarters to go to recuperate our losses. The European Football Championship can certainly give a boost to commerce, so let’s cross our fingers for some big wins, both for our Red Devils and Belgian Retailers! We are already wondering how the non-food markets will evolve during the next quarter of 2016!

Wim Boesmans - Head of POS Measurement