Chinese brands boost global TV shipments to pre-pandemic levels
TrendForce investigations show that Chinese brands have pushed global TV shipments in 1Q23 to an impressive 43.37 million units.
Despite the market being impacted by seasonal fluctuations, resulting in a 21.8% QoQ decline, shipment levels in 2Q23 are poised to recover to pre-pandemic levels at an estimated 47.26 million units – a 9% QoQ increase.
Current projections indicate a notable growth in 1H23 shipments from brands compared to initial expectations at the beginning of the year. Q1 and Q2 have seen an average uptick of 4%, primarily driven by a persistent surge in panel prices, which has encouraged some Chinese brands to stock up early and mitigate overall costs. Considering the IMF’s projection for an economic growth rate below 3% for 2023, coupled with the ongoing impact of inflation on market demand for TVs, TrendForce anticipates a slight 1.2 YoY decrease in annual TV shipments, totalling 198 million units for the year.
High inflation curbs demand for 8K and OLED TVs, prompting a slump in shipments
For high-end flagship products, the current economic climate proves unfavourable for sales of 8K and OLED TVs. Hindered by hefty panel costs and exorbitant overall prices, 8K has struggled to gain traction in the market. Compounding the issue, rampant inflation has been eating at the disposable income of consumers, contributing to a 7.4% nosedive in shipments last year. Forecasts for this year indicate a continuation of negative growth. As it stands, Samsung Electronics takes the lead in championing 8K products, cornering around 70% of the market share, while other brands exhibit tepid interest in promotion. Consequently, 8K TVs have barely made a dent in the market with a meager penetration rate of 0.2–0.3%. Demand for OLED TVs face similar headwinds, despite the persistent climb in LCD TV panel prices this year. Although the gap between 55-inch UHD OLED and LCD panel prices will narrow from 4.2 times at the year’s start to 3 times in 2H23, it’s unlikely to spur brands to boost OLED shipments. Projections indicate a sharp 17.2% drop in shipments, amounting to 5.58 million units.
Hisense’s winning sales strategy in North America and China fuels shipment surge
Hisense deftly navigated both domestic and international markets in 2H22. Within China, Hisense utilised its sub-brand Vidda to capture the attention of young consumers with its innovative Music TVs, while Hisense’s own brand set its sights on the high-end market. This dual-brand approach proved fruitful, catapulting Hisense’s market share in China to a remarkable 22% in 2022, hot on the heels of Xiaomi. In overseas markets, the company homed in on promoting budget-friendly TV models; 40-inch and 58-inch models priced at a mere USD 158 and 268, respectively, became hot commodities among the top five US sales channels. Hisense’s knack for delivering cost-effective options allowed it to weather the storm of inflationary pressures. Its market share in North America soared to 11% in 2022, with projections expected to reach 15% this year. TrendForce’s estimates paint a rosy picture for Hisense, with shipments expected to reach 26.7 million units this year, marking an impressive 11.1% YoY increase. This accomplishment solidifies the brand’s position as the world’s second-largest TV manufacturer, boasting a global market share of 13.4%.
618 presale event in late May to serve as a pivotal barometer for 2H23 TV demand projections
This year has seen prices of TV panels soaring, prompting Xiaomi to spearhead a move to hike retail prices for select TV sizes in China back in March, with rival brands trailing close behind in April. Moving into the end of May, businesses are preparing for the 618 shopping festival, which represents the largest e-commerce promotional event in 1H23. The success of the presale event will serve as a crucial yardstick for brands as they gauge procurement plans for 2H23, subsequently impacting TV panel pricing trends.
TrendForce asserts that the decision to increase prices ahead of the 618 shopping festival reflects the limited profit margins currently found within the TV market – particularly for TVs under 65 inches. It seems unlikely that promotional prices will surpass those from last year’s Double 11 shopping festival, casting doubt on the prospect of significant sales growth during the 618 event. Furthermore, with Chinese brands losing steam in building up their inventories in June, panel makers will be compelled to exercise strict control over utilization rates to sustain the rising trajectory of TV panel prices.
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