Chinese Protective Footwear Market, Forecast to 2023
The Chinese protective footwear market is at a growth stage. As the market has not been well-penetrated, it presents significant potential for growth. The Chinese market is highly fragmented with a large number of participants (>100). The top 3 participants together hold a combined total market share of 7% to 10%. Domestic manufacturers account for a significant market share. However, owing to the presence of a large number of competitors and little product differentiation, the market share of each domestic manufacturer is limited. Foreign companies such as Delta Plus, Honeywell, and Safety Jogger (Cortina), albeit holding a small combined market share, have been growing at a rapid rate in the Chinese market by establishing a strong customer base and brand image. These participants focus on mid-range and high-end products, which allows them to avoid pricing pressures to a certain extent.
Drivers for growth in the Chinese protective footwear market include increasing safety awareness among companies, growing safety consciousness among workers, and economic growth. Lack of safety regulations and effective enforcement, cost concerns, shrinking of some end-use industries, and the potential impact of factory automation are among the strongest factors restraining growth in this market
Safety shoes are preferred and demanded by the majority of end users in the Chinese protective footwear market. An important reason for this is that safety boots are, in general, more technically sophisticated and therefore more expensive than safety shoes. As the Chinese market is highly price-sensitive and given the lack of stringent regulations and strict enforcement, there is a strong customer preference for the most basic and low-priced products.
Manufacturing is the biggest end-use industry for the Chinese protective footwear market. China has been the largest manufacturing hub worldwide with a sizable workforce. Although employment in the manufacturing industry has witnessed a slight decline, penetration of the market is still low, which presents a strong potential for growth. Construction is the most fast-growing end-use industry for the Chinese protective footwear market. This is driven by sustained rise in employment in the industry as well as increasing adoption of protective footwear. In comparison, the mining industry presents fewer opportunities for protective footwear suppliers. The industry has been experiencing a decline in employment over the last 2 to 3 years, and this trend is likely to continue. The industry has also witnessed greater penetration compared to the others, and therefore is likely to present less growth potential.
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