The building and home improvement trade ended up growing by 4.8 per cent in 2020, but the growth was not evenly distributed in the industry. There was a clear difference between consumer and professional customer trade. As larger projects went on ice, consumers themselves began to improve the home and yard.
The high levels of new construction, which has been taking place for several years, started to decline in 2020, which was reflected in the professional customer trade. “Consumers, on the other hand, found pleasure in do-it-yourself, which was also reflected in the sales development focused strongly on consumer sales,” says Minna Liuksiala, CEO of the construction and DIY retail association RASI ry.
“Almost all yard and garden products were sold in record terms. Outdoor decking and grills, as well as plants and garden products saw a huge increase in demand. Demand for larger garden investments, such as outdoor hot tubs, also exceeded all expectations” continued Minna Liuksiala.
OBI has been certified by the Top Employers Institute as a Top Employer Italia 2021 company. This is the fifth consecutive year that the German multinational has obtained this recognition, distinguishing itself for its constant commitment to provide the best working conditions to its employees and for the implementation of best practice, always having its people as a priority focus.
Even in a complex year like 2020 the company completed the HR initiatives that it proposed. In particular it has maintained and implemented the projects envisaged for the development of the digital platform aimed at improving the level of communication between employees, in a historical period in which physical contact was reduced to a minimum.
“The year 2020 has placed us in front of difficult and unexpected challenges – comments Marcello Lorenzi, Human Resources Director of OBI Italia. “The certification, which was awarded to us for the fifth year in a row, confirms the ability of our company to maintain a high focus on people and the quality of the work environment, even in objectively complicated situations” Lorenzi adds: “The challenges in 2020 were not lacking, with the implementation of smart working in the offices, and the introduction of new and stringent hygiene and safety measures in the stores. We can be truly satisfied with the objectives achieved”
“Crisis is a period which requires quick action in retaliation to rapid change” – was the unofficial motto of Technosystem’s in 2020.
Analysts had predicted a 40% drop in sales in the DIY market in April and a 20% drop in May. However, the management of the Domingo chain, which has been a DIY player for almost 26 years with 13 shops in 8 cities throughout Siberia, quickly took all possible measures in reaction to the spread of Covid-19.
The outlets were equipped with individual sanitation posts, a rigorous cleaning schedule was introduced, a wide range of socially important products were added to the range, and new standards for the delivery of goods from the online shop were introduced.
Denis Lizunov, General Director of Technosystem Management Company, said “In 9 months of 2020, the company’s turnover grew by 12% and profit by 15% compared to the same period last year. We haven’t stopped moving forward for a minute!”. He continued “Next year we plan to open seven more shops in several cities. Our priority is the mini format, designed to provide maximum comfort and convenience for our customers, and to become a portal to the showcase of our online shop.”
Further to this, from February 2021 customers of Pervomaster will be able to make use of its new mobile app. The app will offer customers a convenient product search using AI elements, the possibility to search for goods via barcode, add goods to cart in one click and see the unique price of goods as well as their own points balance.