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Evolving dynamics and promising growth in the UK’s LVT market

THE UK’s LVT flooring market, known for its innovation and adaptability, continues to evolve in response to changing consumer preferences and the broader economic landscape. Leading Edge, a market research company in the flooring sector, provides valuable insights into these trends, assisting in framing the present situation and forecasting the future outlook of the LVT market.

Current Market Climate:
Growth and Innovation
The LVT market in the UK stands out for its resilience and adaptability, particularly given the recent global challenges. With the gradual stabilisation of the economy, the market has witnessed a notable rebound and all despite restrained construction activity, particularly in the private new build housing and private housing repair and maintenance sectors. LVT’s versatility and aesthetic appeal have made it a preferred choice in residential and commercial settings.

Technological Advancements and Consumer Preferences
Technological innovations have significantly influenced the LVT sector. Modern manufacturing techniques have enabled the creation of more diverse and realistic designs, with embossing processes closely emulating materials like wood and stone. Most manufacturers have a diverse portfolio with formats such as Rigid Core becoming a standard offering. Furthermore, the sector has seen a rise in environmentally friendly and sustainable practices, resonating with the growing consumer demand for ‘green’ building materials. An example is the concerns that surround air quality in environments such as offices. To address this indoor air quality (IAQ) certifications are becoming an industry norm.

Market Leaders and Emerging Trends
The market is dominated by key players such as Karndean, Amtico, Moduleo, and Polyflor who, according to analysis by Leading Edge account for over three-quarters of the market share. The prominent companies in this sector, known for their extensive product ranges, robust distribution networks, and strong brand recognition, drive the market’s primary dynamics. These industry leaders often set trends in design, innovation, and sustainability practices. However, there’s a healthy competition from a growing number of smaller players.

These emerging entities bring vibrancy to the market with their unique, often specialised offerings, catering to specific customer preferences or focusing on eco-friendly and bespoke solutions. This diversity not only intensifies competition but also enriches the market with various choices, creating a landscape where established and upcoming brands contribute to the development of the UK’s LVT market.

Insights from Leading Edge Reports
Secondary to these market dynamics are insights from Leading Edge’s comprehensive reports on the residential and commercial LVT sector.

‘Our reports provide a historical comparison of market size data plus insight into the market’s trajectory,’ says Elly Cousin, director at Leading Edge. She adds:’ They offer a window into the sector’s resilience and the factors driving its growth. By engaging with key stakeholders, particularly before, during and after the pandemic we continue to deliver an excellent understanding of the LVT sector.’

Growth Forecasts and Market Share Analysis
Despite challenges posed by Brexit and the global pandemic, the LVT market has shown commendable growth. Looking to the contract sector, Leading Edge’s most recent report predicts an increase in volume of over 6% for 2023 compared to 2022. The non adhesive LVT market has particularly flourished, nearly doubling its market share of the contract sector in 2022 compared to 2016. This growth is attributed to the product’s ease of installation and flexibility. Additionally, the increasing usage of rigid core LVT highlights a shift towards more innovative and durable flooring solutions.

Comparative Market Analysis
Further insights into the growth of the LVT market are gained by drawing comparisons with other flooring categories. For the first time, LVT has entered the top three product categories in the GB contract floorcoverings market, alongside resilient sheet and carpet tile, demonstrating its growing influence. This shift comes at the expense of traditional options like carpet roll, which have seen a decline in volume. ‘Leading Edge’s report sets out the shoft in market share of these key product groups,’ says Elly.

Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic
The pandemic undeniably impacted the flooring sector, with the carpet tile market experiencing a significant contraction. However, resilient sheet and LVT have emerged as beneficiaries, indicating a shift in consumer and contractor preferences which is continuing.

Future Outlook
Despite pessimistic forecasts for the UK’s key construction markets the LVT market is poised for continued growth. Its ability to capture market share from other flooring types, thanks to its product and design advantages, positions it favourably for future expansion.
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