New Retailing market report from Business Monitor International: "Croatia Retail Report Q1 2014"
Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 12/06/2013 -- Over recent years the Croatian retail market has steadily grown, predominantly due to the increase of disposable income, falling unemployment levels and easier access to credit. This trend of gradual growth is set to continue over our forecasted period, aided by Croatia's recent accession into the EU. Increasing household numbers and ever increasing household income suggest a positive outlook for the Croatian retail sector.
Croatia's retail sector is potentially at the beginning of a very active period. Large, foreign retail names are becoming more and more frequent players in the country, bringing with them recognisable brands, a greater choice to the customer and all at low prices. The ever more vibrant tourism industry also provides a significant boost to retail as foreign visitors can account for up to 50% of all shoppers in many outlets, especially in the summer months. In general, investment levels in retail will rise as improvements are made to the domestic business environment as a result of EU convergence and in fact, the Croatian retail market provides plenty of growth opportunities for domestic and foreign players.
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With the saturation of Western European markets, international retailers in particular are increasingly looking to emerging markets such as Croatia for expansion opportunities. Large retail establishments are featuring more and more prominently. The main characteristics of the Croatian retail market are concentration, internationalisation and consolidation.
In the long term Croatia has significant market growth potential. Luxury items are expected to become increasingly popular from a relatively low base, as consumers become more cash rich and time-poor due to longer working hours and the stresses of modern life. Customers will not necessarily spend more but we anticipate volume sales increasing as retailers strive to meet consumers' demands for high quality at low prices. Although Croatia's economic recovery will remain sluggish over the coming months, BMI believes the economy is now bottoming out and the relatively robust tourism sector will ensure that growth picks up modestly in 2014.
Challenges facing the Croatian retail market come from its small, ageing population. According to our data, the number of people in the 20-44 age range - a segment that accounts for a key element of future retail spending - is forecast to fall from 34.4% in 2005 to 33.8% by 2016. However, these effects will be mitigated by the increase in Croatians disposable incomes and greater mobility as car ownership and use grows. We also expect modestly improving private consumption to drive the improvement in the country's economic fortunes and benefit the retail sector greatly.
- After a decade of negotiations Croatia became the 28th - member of the EU in July 2013.
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