Aqualisa Case 1

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The UK shower equipment market grew by 0.1% from 2000 to 2001 to reach a value of £588 million in 2001. Market value has increased steadily , totaling nearly 12% for the period 1997 to 2001. Shower products for the domestic and commercial sectors are distributed through a wide range of channels. The main distribution channel continues to be builders and plumbers merchants with the DIY multiples also holding a substantial share. Other retail channels include bathroom specialists, grocery multiples, mail order retailers and department stores. The shower market is highly fragmented (electric, standard mixer and power shower) but three brands continue to dominate – Mira, Aqualisa and Triton, controlling~70% of the market. Aqualisa is an innovative shower manufacturer with the 3rd highest share in the UK shower market in 2000. In May 2001, Aqualisa launched Quartz, a technologically advanced product that was expected to greatly improve the shower experience and gain a large market share. About 60% of U.K consumers are going to buy at most two showers in their lifetime and because key influencers in the decision making process like plumbers where ressistant of adopting the new technologies. Majority of the UK shower market is made of replacement showers which leeds to the company's poor sales. The plumbers influence in the consumer’s shower selection is significant (they have an influence in 73% of mixer shower selections) and the reluctance of plumbers to adopt the Quartz shower has been a considerable factor affecting its sales. Plumbers tend to remain loyal to their selected brand as it is the most comfortable for them in using when installing because of their previous experiences. As a consequence, they are often unwilling to switch to unfamiliar products that may present installation or performance issues that could require a second visit, costing them time and money. In addition, Aqualisa have been unsuccessful in communicating the Quartz’s value...
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