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SEB brews up a recovery with Chinese cookware, Columbian backup

China 2606 Colombia 66 Cons. Discr. - Durables 346 Earnings 494 Quote Watch 264 U.S. 4640

SEB SA, manufacturer of Moulinex and Krups kitchen appliances, announced Q3’20 revenues which rose by just 1.1% year over year. The firm may be gearing up for an acceleration in growth, with CFO Nathalie Lomon noting that in “the context of a buoyant global SDA market, continued favorable trend for cooking products and booming e-commerce.” 

That may explain a significantly faster growth in U.S. seaborne imports linked to the firm which rose by 32.1% year over year in Q3’20, Panjiva’s data shows.

SEB’s sourcing strategy is heavily concentrated, with imports to the U.S. coming mostly from China which accounted for 79.7% of volume in Q3’20, and increased by 8.1% year over year in the same period. 

SEB’s sourcing is also highly cyclical, with imports peaking in the fall before the holiday season. Like other retail companies, including Thule as mentioned in Panjiva research of Oct. 30, SEB may have seen shipments delayed and concentrated into the third quarter. 

SEB also may have near-sourcing in their manufacturing strategy, as Columbian imports accounted for 12.2% of volume in the third quarter. Imports from the country increased by 86.8% year over year, which may signal that SEB has decided to build up a secondary source as a hedge against worsening U.S.-China relations after the forthcoming U.S. elections.

SEB holds fast on China

Chart segments imports associated with SEB SA by origin on a three-month average basis.   Source: Panjiva

Analysis of SEB’s imports by product category shows that recent success has been driven by steel kitchenware, with imports up by 237.3% year over year in Q3’20, which is still accelerating with imports in September increasing by 275.3%. This may be due to consumers stuck at home investing in new or higher quality cookware. Aluminum kitchenware is also up, with imports rising by 17.7% year over year in the third quarter. Unlike steel products, aluminum imports seem to be slowing, with September volumes down 7.2 percentage points from the quarter average.

One weaker area for SAB may be electricals, where imports rose by 54.9% year over year in Q2’20, but fell in Q3 with a 14.8% decline and a 35.4% slide in September. That may reflect earlier stockpiling during the depths of the U.S.-China trade war shown by volumes that jumped by 133.3% year over year in Q3’19.

SEB steeled by pot performance

Chart segments imports associated with SEB SA by product category on a quarterly basis.   Source: Panjiva

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