Central air conditioning market is expected to grow
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To estimate the prospects of central air conditioning systems market development one should have a look at the whole climate industry structure and its trends. So one can see three* main segments. These are household and semi-industrial Air Conditioners Units (ACU), modular ventilation systems and, finally, central air conditioning systems. The first segment has been developing most rapidly in Russia lately. As a result Russia reached the fourth place by household and semi-industrial ACU sales in Europe giving in only Spain, Italy and Greece.
As compared to this market segment, sales of central air conditioning systems have been rather slow till recently. Currently this market has about three times as smaller capacity as the household and semi-industrial ACU market (see Figure 1).
FIGURE 1. (Source Georgy Litvinchuk)
Great sales of Splits and Window ACUs are evidence of, first of all, heavy demand for climate equipment and, therefore, a high potential of the Russian market on the whole. Like most European countries the Baltic nations – Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia consume much more central air conditioning systems than Splits (see Figure 1). Analysis of the current situation on the European markets shows that the higher level of industrial development the greater demand for central air conditioning systems. So, the increasing rates of Russia’s industry development encourage experts to say for sure that she has a great potential for central air conditioning market growth. Ukraine, which is behind Russia by economic progress, is another example of dependence of demand for complicated climate equipment on the sate of economy.
In case economic growth rates are kept the Russian central air conditioning market is expected to grow by 25-35% per year and to overtake household and semi-industrial market by sales in 5-8 years. Such growth rates will be also favored by another very important tendency.
If three-four years ago there practically were not companies capable to design, install and maintain complicated climate equipment, nowadays the situation is rapidly changing for the better. Increasing competition and falling profits force the more serious household ACU market players to look for new niches. In most cases they choose to work with the more complicated equipment such as ventilation and central air conditioning systems.
Alongside with climate companies customers mature as well. Most of them do not want to spoil a building front by tens of Splits. That is why central air conditioning systems sales have grown by more than 30% in 2000. If there had been more investments in Russia’s economy, this market growth rates would have been much greater. In any case practically all buildings constructed by western companies in Russia are air-conditioned. And it was not only a tribute to fashion. In most cases technological environment requirements determine specific temperature and moisture conditions, as well as air clearness, mobility and gas composition. For example, usage of work places air conditioning in metallurgy or at watches assembling significantly increases labor productivity and decreases defect percentage.
So, all the tendencies show that experts can expect the market capacity of Russia’s central air conditioning systems to grow by a factor of 5 and more in the near future.
* There is also the fourth segment – air parameters close control equipment. However, this market has its specific features and develops in accordance with its own special principles.