Sharp focus will drive change in the market according to Bathroom Manufacturers Association chief executive, Tom Reynolds, as he looks ahead to the association's priorities in 2022.
"The bathroom manufacturing sector is operating in a demand-driven, supply constrained environment and achieving record-breaking sales figures. At BMA, we are getting under the skin of the market in a whole new way in 2022. Comprehensively understanding what consumers and channel partners think is vital to our members as they plan product development and marketing strategies.
"Expert, relevant statistical data from specialist research partners is being gathered to capture sales to builders and tradespeople, and show trends in consumer sentiment. This valuable information will tactically equip our members with the powerful knowledge to influence their strategic direction.
"The last few years have required a great deal of adaption and ingenuity to generate the growth, despite challenging trading conditions. Generating record-breaking sales is no mean feat, and it is a reflection of both the strength of the current market and the resilience of those involved. With high demand, supply and labour issues, and a global shipping crisis, the constraints have been many in number. But in the midst of this, BMA’s end of year consolidated data shows, members reached nearly £1.2bn sales, well up on both 2020 and 2019.
"I genuinely believe this growth could have been even greater without these brakes on our collective performance, and in that context, it’s time to set our sights high. The latest poll results from BMA research show that 23% of the UK population are planning a full bathroom refurb in the next two years. Even if there is a slight dip to the previous poll result, 25% in June 2021, this should be viewed in the context of extremely high demand.
"We know the economic whirlwind of the cost of living crisis, rising energy prices and higher inflation could impact household spending in 2022. Indeed, this uncertainty has caused CPA to softened prediction’s on RMI output in the coming months and years, expected to remain flat in 2022 before falling by 2% next year. However, we are working from an abnormally high baseline, after a period of historical growth in activity.
"Changes in bathroom product purchasing will be increasingly influenced by water and energy efficiency, driven by national policy. The bathroom sector’s ambition to lead the change and create inspiring, sustainable bathrooms will be critical to deliver what UK homeowners want and need from their future bathrooms."