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Afidamp Italian distributor survey shows decline in sales16th of August 2013
The latest survey of the Italian market for distribution of cleaning products by industry association AfidampCOM has highlighted that the sector is dominated by small companies. The majority - 52 per cent - have a turnover of less than one million euros.
The number of businesses with a turnover between 0.5 and one million euros is rising - there has been an increase of three per cent in the number of those with fewer than five employees.
Of those distributors that took part in the survey, 5.6 per cent of them said they had experienced a decrease in turnover of 20 per cent during the period 2011/12. Many highlighted delays in payment by the public sector, a reduction in margins and direct competition from manufacturers as the most damaging factors affecting them.
One of the strategies adopted by distributors to respond to difficult market conditions, says AfidampCOM is investment in training. A significant 66 per cent of respondents said they had invested in training courses during 2012, compared with 58 per cent in 2010 and 63 per cent in 2011.
The customer base remains largely unchanged with 54 per cent of respondents claiming to have a portfolio exceeding 300 clients. And the majority of distributors are continuing to invest in post-sales and maintenance services in line with customer requirements.
"This year's survey highlights the dynamics that were emerging at the end of 2011 and that, given the state of the market, continue to consolidate. We believe specialisation and customer service are two levers important to aim to deal with a situation of decline that affects us deeply," said Francesco Bertini, president of AfidampCOM.
"The Association will pursue its task to promote contact between the distributors, to promote small and micro enterprises and not just large groups."