Market of furniture components and fittings in the Russian Federation: trends and prospects
The Russian furniture fittings market has changed insignificantly over the past one and a half to two years. However, serious structural changes took place within it, thanks to which new producers from China and Turkey got their chance.
About the Russian furniture fittings market
According to the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Industry Enterprises, the share of imported furniture fittings in Russia in 2021-2022 reached 95-97%. At first glance, this is a paradoxical situation: one of the leaders in the world metallurgy is forced to buy metal fittings abroad. But in fact, there are two reasons for this trend: the high prices for metal in the domestic Russian market that have developed in recent years, as well as the technological backwardness of Russian enterprises that produce accessories.
The volume of imports of furniture fittings, according to the Federal Customs Service of Russia and Rosstat, has only once fallen below $200 million since 2012: in 2016, this figure amounted to $195.1 million. for furniture" and does not take into account adjacent market segments. If we look at the statistics for a wider range (TN VED 8302), then the volume of imports will be 6-7 times higher. For example, in 2021, this indicator almost reached $1.3 billion.
In the context of supplier countries in 2021-2022, about 70% of total imports came from China. The share of European countries accounted for approximately 23%. But it is important to understand that mainly models of the initial and middle price segment were supplied from China, while more expensive products were supplied from Europe. Therefore, the departure of European manufacturers from the Russian market did not have a significant impact on the segment of affordable furniture that is most in demand among buyers, while some high-budget furniture manufacturers were forced to urgently look for alternative models of fittings or supply channels from Europe.
If we consider the structure of fittings consumption by furniture segments, then according to Abarus Market Research, 40% is for kitchens, 20% for various storage systems (wardrobes, dressing rooms), 15% for doors and windows, 10% for upholstered furniture and other types of furniture, 5% - for bathroom furniture.
Another problem of the Russian furniture market, in addition to imports, is the adjustment of production equipment (the same assembly lines) to specific models of accessories. Reconfiguration or re-equipment of production will require serious financial investments, which not all manufacturers are ready for. The way out would be measures of support from the state in the form of subsidies, grants or soft loans provided for the re-equipment of production.
Promising areas of cooperation
- Accessories for premium furniture.
The share of European fittings suppliers in total imports to Russia in 2021 did not exceed 23%. However, a significant share (about a third) of the total volume of supplies was made up of accessories for high-budget furniture, including those made from fine wood. These are primarily German, Austrian and Italian manufacturers. Undoubtedly, part of the products from departed brands can be delivered through third countries, however, in this case, the delivery time will increase significantly, not to mention the final cost of accessories, which will affect the final price of furniture. In such a situation, Russian manufacturers will be enthusiastic about entering the market with fittings that are comparable in quality of materials and workmanship with European counterparts, but at a more attractive price.
- Equipment for the production of accessories.
About 90% of equipment for the production of fittings at Russian factories is foreign-made. This figure is confirmed, for example, by Anton Martynov, CEO of MartiCasa. Of course, a certain stock of spare parts and consumables was accumulated even before February 2022, but sooner or later it will be exhausted. In addition, over time, the equipment will have to be upgraded or replaced with a new one. Accordingly, manufacturers (primarily Chinese) have a chance to gain a foothold in the Russian market.
- Creation of joint ventures and engineering centers.
In the fifties and sixties of the last century, the formation of Chinese industry was facilitated, among other things, by the help of Soviet engineers. Today, the technologies and solutions of partners from the Land of the Rising Sun, together with the Russian engineering school and scientific base, will become the very solution that will allow the domestic market to overcome difficult times for it. For example, with the help of partners, new production of hidden hinges and closers, dampers, shock absorbers, hydraulic hinges, bilateral hidden hinges, lifts with position fixation can be launched - that is, those very products that are either produced in insufficient volume or are not produced at all by Russian enterprises.
Woodex exhibition is an important step to enter the Russian market
In 2021, almost 5.8 thousand people visited the international exhibition of equipment, materials and components for the woodworking and furniture industry Woodex. Interestingly, 83% of them are purchasing decision makers, and 41% are top management of companies. For companies planning to enter the Russian furniture fittings market, participation in such an event is undoubtedly valuable.
Firstly, this is a unique opportunity to negotiate further cooperation with the decision makers without unnecessary formalities: thus, according to the results of previous exhibitions, at least 80% of the exhibitors found new clients and business partners onsite the trade show. Secondly, the possibility of live communication with leaders and recognized industry experts is no less important.