The UK installer returned the best results among 1,200 hvac installation companies in six European countries surveyed by the European Mechanical Installation Monitor.
Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland and Germany also saw an improvement in Q4 2014 compared to 2013, with France being the only country with a negative development.
In the UK, more installers reported an increase than a decrease in their turnover in every quarter of 2014 compared to 2013. Expectations for Q1 2015 are also reported to be positive with more than half of the installers (53%) expecting an increase in their total turnover, against only 11% who expect a decrease. Installers in the UK have one of the best filled order books of the six countries with, on average, enough work for 4.7 months.
Whereas the UK shows signs of improvement, the German economy and installation sector showed signs of slowing down. Despite a higher share of installers reporting growing turnovers in Q1, Q2 and Q3 2014, more than 50% of the installers did not see any change in their turnover in comparison to 2013. Only in the last quarter of 2014 did the turnover of the German installers increase, with 44% experiencing increased turnovers, as against only 6% that saw a decline.
But while the last quarter of 2014 was better than the same period in 2013, expectations for Q1 2015 are not that positive. They are also the professionals with the lowest average order book duration at 3.6 months.
French installers are experiencing difficult times, with a majority indicating a decreasing turnover throughout 2014. Even in Q4 2014, when other countries experienced an upturn, the situation in France worsened. Expectations for Q1 2015 are not bright either and France has the second lowest order book at 3.7 months.
Although more installers in Poland saw an increase in turnover in Q1 and Q2 of 2014, a sharp decrease occurred in Q3 2014. Q4 was more positive for the Polish installers, as are expectations for Q1 2015. Order books for Polish installers are the longest of all countries at 5.2 months. Small companies seem to have the hardest times in Poland. Results show that when the company size increases, both turnover and order book results become more positive. This is not true for the rest of the countries where mostly the larger companies suffer from decreasing turnovers.
Since Q2 2014 the situation among the Belgian installers has been improving with every quarter. Q4 2014 shows the most positive turnover results in Belgium so far, with more installers reporting an increase (42%) than a decrease (20%) in their turnover. The expectations for Q1 2015 are even slightly more positive. The order books in Q4 2014 are filled for an average of 4.6 months. This is a bit lower than in Q3.
A similar number of installers were experiencing increasing and decreasing turnover in the Netherlands in Q1 and Q2 2014 but Q3 clearly showed improvement and this continued in Q4 2014. The outlook for Q1 2015 is positive for the Dutch installers. The amount of work in months has grown to an average of 4.7 months.
Further information from USP Marketing Consultancy BV.
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