Finnish hardware and building retail recovers

According to the statistics published by Finnish Hardware Association Rasi, the retail of hardware and building utilities is recovering in Finland after a few years of downturn, reports the Finnish daily Helsingin Sanomat.

The improvement follows a current upward trend in the construction sector. The recovery is twofold, applying to retails of hardware and building utilities for households and builders as well as to retails of HVAC and electrical equipment for construction sites.

“For four years, the sales decreased by half a billion euros annually, but as of now the trend is changing,” says Harri Fagerlund, CEO of Rasi.

This year, the sales of retail stores focusing on hardware and building utilities have increased by three percent. The growth rate of the sales of electrical equipment has been five percent and of HVAC equipment four percent.

Competition for market shares

In terms of market shares, domestic retail chains have managed to hold their ground throughout the years of recession. So far, foreign providers have not been able to gain substantial market shares. In a way, the slowdown of sales has curdled the competition for market shares, as the companies have settled to defend their current positions.

At the moment, Finnish company Kesko holds a 40 percent market share, leading the field by quite a margin. The foreign-owned Stark retail chain places second with a share of almost 20 percent.

Moreover, the Swiss-headquartered Bauhaus has a market share of more than four percent, and the Swedish Byggmax a bit less than a percent.