Trend for fire protection doors
The market for fire protection doors registered strong growth rates last year in Western Europe (Germany, Great Britain, Spain, France, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Benelux). In 2016 the increase in sales was 3.1%. Sales increased by + 4.6%. With this gratifying annual result, the long years of stagnation have finally come to an end, according to a study by Interconnection Consulting.
Austria is a growth emperor
The industry was able to achieve high rates of growth in all the countries under investigation. In Austria, the growth was particularly abundant. Last year an increase of 7.5% was registered in the Alpine Republic. The Spanish market grew at a similar rate, rising again after years of steep declines over the last year (+ 6.6%). And that is not the end of it. Growth rates are set to rise to double-digit percentages by 2018. Italy (+ 2.2%), France (+ 1.9%) and the Benelux countries (+ 1.7%) were able to breathe again for the first time after years of deprivation. This also applies to Switzerland (+ 2.5%) and the UK (+ 3.6%). Germany, the largest submarket in Europe with 850,400 sold fire protection doors last year, was able to slightly expand its sales volume (+ 2.5%).
Wood is clearly number one
Fire protection doors made of wood represent the strongest product group in Western European countries with a share of 47%. However, in the past the proportion of wood has already been higher. This is due to the trend towards aluminum doors, which have continuously been increasing their market share over recent years and currently have a market share of 11.4%. By 2019, the share, according to Interconnection, will increase to 12.1%. Steel doors, e.g. in the Eastern European countries with around two-thirds of the market share are clearly number one and are ranked second in Western Europe with 36.5%. Especially in Germany, steel doors with a market share of more than 50% (50.1%) are very popular.
Demand for uniform regulations
The outlook for the industry continues to be excellent. However, different minimum standards in the individual countries hinder the free movement of goods on the internal market. For example, Spanish fire doors do not meet the requirements of the German market and vice versa - German doors will be too expensive for the Spanish market. As a result of this asymmetry, competition between countries is severely impaired. With the help of the CE marking, the EU wants to ensure compliance with basic product requirements according to EU directives. However, the implementation of the CE marking for fire protection doors has not been successful. The CE marking is implemented in different countries under different standards. Another reason that led to skepticism among the producers is that CE quality control is currently so expensive that the logical consequence of the implementation would be a thinning of the competition, and the overall market would be divided between only 5 to 10 European players, explains Sasa Spiridonov, author of the study.