CHICAGO — Distributor business and industry outlook is on a continued upswing, as the majority polled in American Coin-Op’s annual Distributor Survey enjoyed better business than the previous year, and is expecting overall 2014 sales to surpass those of 2013.
More than half of distributors (53.7%) say that business—including sales of newly constructed self-service laundries and replacement business—was better in 2013 compared to 2012. When it comes to sales projections, the same percentage believes 2014 sales will be better than 2013’s.
Roughly 12% of respondents say 2013 business was worse than 2012’s, while 34.2% say business has stayed the same.
Every distributor listed in the American Coin-Op Distributors Directory was invited to participate in this year’s unscientific survey, which charts 2013 business and makes comparisons to previous years.
FACTS AND FIGURES
So, how do numbers from 2013 compare to distributor business performance in years past? Here is a quick recap of facts and figures.
The average newly constructed store in 2013 has 4.5 top loaders, 26.6 front loaders, 32.8 dryer pockets, and covers, on average, 2,663 square feet.
How does this measure up to previous survey results? Following are new-store profiles from the previous five surveys:
- 2012: 3.4 top loaders, 28.0 front loaders, 30.8 dryer pockets, and 2,754 square feet
- 2011: 4.5 top loaders, 30.0 front loaders, 34.1 dryer pockets, and 2,721 square feet
- 2010: 3.8 top loaders, 26.9 front loaders, 32.1 dryer pockets, and 2,663 square feet
- 2009: 5.7 top loaders, 27.3 front loaders, 32.6 dryer pockets, and 2,712 square feet
- 2008: 5.8 top loaders, 27.8 front loaders, 32 dryer pockets, and 2,743 square feet
Distributors were also asked if their company brokers self-service laundries. Roughly 31% of respondents in this year’s survey say they do, compared to 29% in the 2013 survey. Figures on operating a route laundry have remained virtually unchanged, with 38.1% of respondents in this year’s survey saying they do, compared to 38% in the 2013 survey.
The share of distributors hosting an equipment show in the upcoming year has dropped slightly, as 54.8% say they have such plans for 2015, down from 62% in last year’s survey (check www.americancoinop.com/coinop-events for announcements of upcoming events).
What is the overall tone among distributors regarding how they feel about 2014 overall sales? For 53.7% of respondents, 2014 sales are expected to be better than those of 2013, while 36.6% believe they will be about the same. The remaining 9.8% believe that 2014 business will be worse than 2013 totals.