Magazine: Sheet to sheet growth

By: Trademagazin editor Date: 2018. 05. 11. 07:35

In the category of household paper products napkins and towels performed differently in 2017: napkin sales continued to decrease slowly, but paper towel sales kept growing.

Eszter Hegedűs
brand manager
Essity Hungary

Eszter Hegedűs, brand manager of Essity Hungary Kft. told our magazine that they count on a similar trend this year. She revealed that in the paper napkin segment 1-ply products represent more than half of the market. However, the market share of these is shrinking as 2- and 3-ply paper napkins are gaining ground. In the kitchen towel market private label products dominate, but Zewa has stayed the market leader in the segment (in value).

Bence Szilva
marketing assistant
Sofidel Hungary

We learned from Bence Szilva, marketing assistant of Sofidel Hungary Kft. that the stagnation/small decline of the napkin category is the result of paper towels’ breakthrough, as these products can substitute napkins as well. In the paper towel category 2-3 ply, few-sheet, 2-4 roll products are popular, together with 1-roll jumbo kitchen towels – sales of the latter grow by more than 10 percent every year.

Orsolya Varga
brand manager

Orsolya Varga, brand manager of Vajda-Papír Kft. spoke to us about the surge in sales of 1-roll, 500-sheet products and the growing demand for many-sheet, 2-roll products. In the paper towel category value sales of the company’s Ooops! products jumped 25 percent from 2016 to 2017.

Attila Gerencsér
FMCG-business unit manager

Attila Gerencsér, the head of Carboferr Zrt.’s FMCG business unit informed that the paper towel category is characterised by demand for products with a good price-value ratio and conscious buying. XXL-size products are more and more popular.

Ms Hegedűs called attention to the fact that paper towels aren’t only used in the kitchen any more, but also in the garden, garage, etc. Thanks to this it has become important for rolls to consist of more sheets. From Zewa kitchen towels the 325-sheet Jumbo product is the most popular, while Wisch&Weg has the best absorption characteristics. Ms Varga told us that Ooops! Maxi 1-roll, 2-ply, 500-sheet paper towel is the perfect solution around the house. Another popular product of the company is Ooops! Duo XXL 2-roll, 2-ply, 220-sheet paper towel.

Mr Szilva opines that consumer prefer 1-ply, many-sheet paper napkins for everyday use. From their napkin products 1-ply, 33x33cm and 30x30cm, white products printed with more colours sell the best. Mr Gerencsér believes that shoppers are very conscious when buying napkin in the holiday season (Easter, Christmas, etc.) or for special occasions. They don’t just focus on functionality, but also on design, quality and packaging.

What about brand loyalty? Essity’s full Zewa portfolio has a very loyal buyer base, but the company’s experience is that price promotions strongly influence sales. Sofidel’s Forest brand reported similar experiences. Vajda-Papír has found that a growing number of shoppers want premium quality products. The company’s goal is to make Ooops! products easily noticeable on store shelves, so that bargain hunters spot them instantly.

As for new innovations in 2018, Essity renews the full Wisch&Weg assortment, paper towels are going to become stronger and have bigger absorption capacity. Last year Sofidel completely revamped the Forest brand: products not only got a new image and packaging, but new products were also launched. This year the Regina brand will be launched, with products in 5 categories – Regina XXL and Regina Wish 2-roll kitchen towels, and Regina Big One, Regina Expert and Regina Blitz universal paper towels to be used all around the house.

This spring Vajda-Papír puts the Ooops! Excellence 2-roll, 3-ply paper towel on the market. The new product has 180 percent more paper (in terms of paper length on the roll) than the classic 50-sheet Ooops! paper towel. Carboferr’s brand Renova launched a 3-ply, illustrated napkin collection this Easter. A Value Pack will also come out this year, with the brand’s characteristic design elements. Their flagship product, the premium category Renova Red Label 1-roll, coloured, large-sized, designer kitchen towel was very successful last year. Reacting to market demand, Carboferr will put spring and summer limited edition XXL 2-roll paper towels on the market.

Household paper products are backed with large-scale marketing support. Essity’s Zewa brand is supported with online ads, in-store communication, coupons and price promotions. Sofidel promotes the Forest brand with joining the collective prize game of Hungarian Product – the winner of the main prize, a Suzuki Vitara, was a Forest Szofi napkin buyer last year. Vajda-Papír uses television commercials to promote Ooops! Maxi paper towel and Ooops! Excellence toilet paper in April and May. The brand’s YouTube channel, Facebook profile and the blog will strengthen Ooops!’s online presence. //

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