global consumer products industry health despite uncertainty

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Global consumer products industry shows signs of health despite global economic uncertainty

Nestlé and four more Swiss companies among the Top 250 in the world

The 250 largest consumer products companies grew 7 percent with total sales exceeding $3 trillion (US), up from $2.82 trillion (US) in fiscal year 2010 according to a new report by professionals services firm Deloitte. The report “Global Powers of Consumer Products” identifies the 250 largest consumer products companies based on publicly available data for the companies’ fiscal years which ended through June 2012.

According to the sixth annual 2013 Global Powers of Consumer Products report issued by Deloitte, the world’s 250 largest consumer products companies grew by 7 percent in fiscal year 2011 (which encompasses fiscal years ended through June 2012) despite global economic uncertainty, with total sales exceeding $3 trillion (US), up from $2.82 trillion (US) in fiscal year 2010. Additionally, the report found that the ten largest consumer products companies reported combined sales of $846 billion (US).

“The global economy has witnessed several challenges including inflation, the euro crisis, and natural disasters. Healthy consumer product sales are an indicator that growth in many developing economies is more than offsetting adverse conditions in many developed economies” said Howard da Silva, Leader Consumer Business for Deloitte in Switzerland. “For the coming years, this means that the industry should see some continued growth, but disproportionately coming from developing markets.”

Swiss companies

For the first time, the top three spots were filled by companies from the electronic products sector. For the fifth consecutive year, Samsung retained its number one position, followed by Apple Inc., which climbed 21 spots in five years to rank second. Panasonic remained in third place. The Swiss multinational Nestlé follows in fourth place1. Other Swiss companies in the Top 250 worldwide are Richemont (74), Swatch (104), Rolex (153) and Emmi (246).

On a European level, Nestlé ranked number 1 of the “Top Ten European Product Companies”. In the “Top Ten fashion goods companies” in Europe, Richemont is ranked number 3, Swatch number 6 and Rolex number 8.

Howard da Silva explains, “For the second consecutive year, the fashion goods industry posted the highest growth rate (14 percent) of all the product sectors analyzed. It also remained one of the most profitable, with a composite net profit margin of 8 percent. On the other hand, the food, drink and tobacco sector saw its top 250 representation decline. Nevertheless, the sector reported substantial composite sales growth of 9 percent.”

Emerging markets continue to fuel Fastest 50
The 50 fastest-growing consumer products companies grew more than three times faster than the Top 250 as a whole. For the first time, the Fastest 50 were determined by their sales growth over the five-year period 2006 to 2011. Nearly 60 percent of the Fastest 50 were also among the 50 fastest growing companies in 2011, with developing markets such as China and Brazil well represented.

Consumer Behavior

The report also gauged consumer behavior trends particularly in light of digital growth. With the increase of smartphone and tablet adoption, the impact on consumers and their “path to purchase” has been evident. Deloitte research has found that 58 percent of consumers who own a smartphone have used it for store-related shopping.

“The impact of this digital growth on consumer and shopper behavior cannot be underestimated. It affects the way consumers interact with brands, how they research products, purchase via multiple channels, take advantage of promotions, and how they receive post-purchase customer service,” said da Silva. “Consumer Products companies must continue to rethink their operating models and leverage analytics to better identify, understand, and ultimately satisfy consumer needs.”

Top 10 consumer products:

Rank Company Country of origin 2011 Net Sales (US$mil) FY 11 net sales growth %
1 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd South Korea 150,152 6.7
2 Apple inc. United States 108,249 66.0
3 Panasonic Corporation Japan 99,412 -9.7
4 Nestlé S.A. Switzerland 94,704 -10.1
5 The Proter & Gambler Company United States 83,680 1.4
6 Sony Corporation Japan 70,022 -12.3
7 PepsiCo, Inc. United States 66,504 15.0
8 Unilever Group Netherlands and United Kingdom 64,721 5.0
9 Kraft Foods Inc. (now Mondelēz International, Inc) United States 54,365 10.5
10 Nokia Corporation Finland 53,846 -8.9

1Nestlé’s sales for 2011 and 2010 reflect an accounting change. Comparable sales figures for years prior to 2010 are not available.

About Deloitte in Switzerland

Deloitte is a leading accounting and consulting company in Switzerland and provides industry-specific services in the areas of audit, tax, consulting and corporate finance. With approximately 1,100 employees at six locations in Basel, Berne, Geneva, Lausanne, Lugano and Zurich (headquarters), Deloitte serves companies and institutions of all legal forms and sizes in all industry sectors. Deloitte AG is a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP, the UK member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL). DTTL member firms comprise of approximately 200,000 employees in more than 150 countries around the world.

Zurich, 10 April 2013

Note to editors

In this press release references to Deloitte are references to Deloitte AG, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP, which is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms. Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries are leading business advisers, providing audit, tax, consulting and corporate finance services through more than 12,600 exceptional people across the UK and Switzerland. Known as an employer of choice for innovative human resources programmes, it is dedicated to helping its clients and people excel. Deloitte AG is recognised by the Federal Audit Oversight Authority and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority. The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

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