BEIJING, March 10 (Xinhua) -- Small household appliances are gaining popularity in China amid the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pneumonia (COVID-2019), bucking against the downward trend of the whole household appliance industry, reported the Xinhua-run Shanghai Securities News on Tuesday.
As many people stay at home to contain the spread of COVID-2019, they have more time to indulge in food, housework, etc., spurring consumption in small household appliances.
Sales of toaster ovens, air fryers and mini rice cookers in February surged 280 percent, 659 percent and 2,612 percent year on year respectively, according to data from Suning.com Co., Ltd. (002024. SZ), one of China's biggest retailers.
Besides small kitchen appliances, hair clippers, disinfection cabinets, hanging clothes steamers have also seen increasing demands. The sales of hanging steamers jumped 120 percent year on year, while that of disinfection appliances skyrocketed 13,777 percent year on year.
The online search for small household appliances on leading Chinese e-commerce platforms such as JD.com and T-mall as well as related user reviews are exploding.
A new consumption era of small domestic appliances is coming, as they can better meet young people's demands for specialized goods in various segments, and have brand new marketing modes and sales channels, said a report by Everbright Securities.
The soaring demands in the sector stimulate manufacturers to move faster to resume production.
The goal of Xinbao Holding (002705.SZ), a manufacturer of home appliance, is to restore 100 percent or even 110 percent of production capacity, said Zeng Zhanhui, president of the company.
Since February 15, the company has arranged 10-odd vehicles picking up returned workers arriving in the railway stations in Guangzhou, south China's Guangdong province. At present, 70 percent of the manufacturer's employees have returned to work, ensuring the on-time delivery of half of the total orders, which are still growing in number.
Xinbao Holding's orders from overseas in March and April are higher than the same period of last year, and new orders will be dealt with in May, said Zeng.
Likewise, to meet explosive market demands, Galanz Group, a leading household electric appliance enterprise in China, has mobilized more than 160 management staff to work at the frontline of production.
Liang Zhaoxian, chairman of Galanz Group, said he focused on making arrangement for production resumption at daytime, and kept communicating with overseas clients at night.
The company hopes to achieve 35 percent year-on-year growth in economic performance this year. For this purpose, it plans to invest 10 billion yuan and hire about 10,000 frontline workers, 1,000 university graduates and 1,000 engineers, according to Liang.
Household appliance giants also quicken their investment in small appliances.
Midea Group (000333.SZ), a leading maker of many popular small household appliances, has resumed operation in 31 production bases. Meanwhile, it is stepping up efforts to promote work resumption of the production base in Hubei province, which is the epicenter of the COVID-2019 outbreak.
Similarly, the small home appliance manufacturing company affiliated to Gree Electric Appliances, Inc. (000651.SZ), has launched online recruitment to deal with the massive orders Gree recently received. (Edited by Su Dan, firstname.lastname@example.org)