In 2013, French consumers continued to perceive their garden as the “fifth room in their house”. The need for fresh air and a green environment is still highly valued in France and gardening represents an important pastime, which is reflected in French consumption within the gardening category.
Husqvarna France SAS maintained its leading position in gardening in 2013, registering a 4% value share. The company was able to maintain its leadership thanks to its diverse product portfolio, being present in gardening power tools, as well as gardening hand tools and lawn mowers. Its sister company, Gardena France, ranked fourth overall and also led the watering category. This position allowed the GBO, Husqvarna AB, to offset the negative effect of the weather on certain product categories. Also, the innovation-driven strategy of the company helped support sales, notably within lawn mowers.
Even if the consumer interest in gardening remains strong for French people, the category is expected to struggle to return to pre-crisis sales levels given it is expected to see a 2% decline over the forecast period as a whole. The pressure on consumer spending power increased drastically in 2012 and 2013, a development that will have long-lasting effects on the value sales of the category as French consumers will continue to change their purchasing behaviour, seeking alternative solutions for gardening. While this is not expected to affect the search for high-quality and convenient gardening equipment, as French consumers are aware of the benefits of efficient and convenient gardening power tools, lawn mowers and watering systems, it is expected to continue to hinder volume sales.