Power tools by the numbers
There’s nothing like a new power tool display to draw the attention of the average mid- to high-testosterone do-it-yourselfer. But how do consumers shop by channel? And what drives their decisions and their purchases? Recent consumer research from Port Washington, N.Y.-based The NPD Group shows “trusted brand” still ranks No. 1 as the reason for purchase.
BREAKDOWN OF TOTAL POWER TOOL SALES BY CHANNEL (DOLLAR SHARE)
Analysis: The survey covered combo power tool kits, electric saws, drills, sanders, air-powered tools, rotary tools and electric staplers. For the most part, each product fell in line with the channel breakdown above, with some exceptions. For instance, hardware stores had a 12.5% dollar share of sanders, compared with a 6.1% share for all power tools. Also, combo-power tool kits are a sweet spot for the big boxes at 63.5% dollar share.
REASON RETAILER SHOPPED
|Close to home||19.2||20.3|
Analysis: The power of “trusted brand” as a reason for purchase came as somewhat of a surprise, according to Matt Fortsch, researcher for NPD. “When the economy declined, we expected that price was going to be the driving force behind these purchases. But it’s quality brand that ranks first,” he said. “Of course, people still want it at a good price.” Behind the scenes, the use of the Internet has surpassed store visits as the No. 1 research method, he added.
2010 TOTAL POWER TOOL SALES BY AGE GROUP (UNIT SALES)
|Age group||Total||Electric saw||Drill|
|Income group||WHCs||Hardware stores||Mass|
Analysis: The youngest (18 to 34) demographic is more likely to buy drills than any other power tool, and is also more likely than the other age groups listed above to buy any power tool at all. In the warehouse home center channel, however, the 45 to 54 age group accounted for the largest increase in sales. This group also had the largest increase in mass merchant power tool sales, according to NPD research.
Methodolgy: NPD data are based on a monthly tracking of nearly 70 categories and 30,000 opt-in consumers. The 2010 data above come from the 12 months ended Aug. 31, 2010.
Tillman appointed to lighting company board
Cree Inc., the Durham, N.C.-based manufacturer of LED lighting products, has elected Robert Tillman to its board of directors. Tillman, 67, is the former president and CEO of Lowe’s. After his retirement from Lowe’s in 2005, he became a member of the board of directors of the Bank of America Corp. until 2009.
Tillman will serve on the compensation committee of Cree’s board of directors, the announcement said.
Cree is a publicly traded company with annual revenues of $867 million. Its products include LED fixtures and bulbs for both the retail and commercial markets and semiconductor solutions for wireless and power applications.
Quarterly sales slip 3.2% at Huttig
Huttig Building Products, the St. Louis-based distributor, reported net sales of $127.2 million for its last fiscal quarter, which ended Sept. 30, a 3.2% decline from sales of $131.4 million in the same period of 2009.
Sales declined in building products but increased in all other product categories in 2010 from 2009, the company reported in an SEC filing. Millwork sales increased approximately 6% in 2010 to $58.4 million. Building product sales decreased approximately 15% in 2010 to $54.9 million. Wood products sales increased approximately 15% to $13.9 million in 2010.
The company posted a net loss of $4.5 million for the three-month period, compared with $1.1 million for the same period a year ago.
On Sept. 30, Huttig amended and restated its existing credit agreement with a four-year, $120 million, asset-based senior secured revolving credit facility, according to the filing.
Huttig is a two-step distributor of lumber, panels, decking, windows, doors, fasteners and other building materials. The company serves 41 states through 27 distribution centers.