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03/10/2019

The swimming pool sector forecasts a turnover of 1,274 million euros, 6% more than in 2018

2019 will be a new year of sustained growth for the swimming pool sector in Spain, demonstrating the good health of its companies and the dynamism of a market that is very receptive to innovation. The sector expects to close the year with a turnover of 1,274 million euros, almost 6% more than the previous year, according to the analysis of the sector carried out by the Spanish Association of Swimming Pool Professionals (ASOFAP) and the Piscina & Wellness Barcelona trade fair, which will be held from 15th to 18th October at the Gran Via venue of Fira de Barcelona.

Among the participants in this study – which brings together the opinions of 228 companies – we can find manufacturers and product distributors, equipment and technologies for swimming pools, as well as builders, installers and maintenance companies from all over Spain. The business climate reflected in the ‘Sector Barometer’ is generally very favourable for 2019: Two thirds of the companies will outperform last year’s results in terms of turnover – most of them between 5% and 10% growth – one third expect to remain stable compared to the previous year, and only the remaining 5.7% will obtain worse results than in 2018.

This good performance of the current business is also manifested in the Business Confidence Index 2019-2020, which stands at 43.7 points, and which measures both optimism and confidence of entrepreneurs, as well as real business data. 56.1% of the companies consulted consider their business prospects for 2019 to be favourable, 39.9% average and 3.9% unfavourable.

This level of confidence is lower than previous years (68.5 in 2017-18, and 63.5 points in 2018-19) which seems to point to a slowdown in business growth for companies in the swimming pool sector in 2020, probably motivated by economic uncertainty. However , 44.3% of the companies in the sector expect 2020 to be a favourable year; 46.9% expect average growth, while 8.8 have unfavourable prospects.

For the president of ASOFAP, Pedro Arrebola, “the ‘Barometer’ reflects the strength of the Spanish swimming pool sector, which has undergone five years of sustained growth and has managed to balance business opportunities in markets such as new construction, refurbishment and, in particular, maintenance, which is gaining strength with the increase in demand for high value-added products and services”. According to Arrebola, the key to increasing confidence levels is to continue to push for innovation and the professionalisation of the sector.

Spain is the fourth country in the world and the second in Europe in terms of the number of swimming pools,
with a current total 1.3 million units, including those for residential use and those for public and collective use). It is, therefore, a mature market with special appeal in terms of equipment, maintenance, refurbishment and comprehensive renovation of these facilities.

The current year has seen a significant upturn in new construction, especially in the area of public and communal use. ASOFAP estimates that 26,000 new swimming pools will be built in Spain in 2019, 6% more than in 2018.

This fact is confirmed in the ‘Barometer’ where new construction increases its relative importance among the main business lines of the sector, representing 36.8%, while renovation accounts for 27.5%, and pool maintenance, 35.6%.

With regard to the type of swimming pools according to their use, 64% of the firms’ business is dedicated to the installation or maintenance of residential swimming pools, that is, those located in private homes. Meanwhile, the volume of business from public and communal swimming pools (residential communities, tourist establishments, water parks and sports centres) accounts for 36% of the market.

Digitalisation and sustainability, the main trends
Most companies in the swimming pool sector point out the lack of officially certified professionals, unqualified practitioners and the absence of official training qualifications related to the installation and maintenance of swimming pools as the main challenges. There is growing concern among firms in the sector about the key technical aspects for carrying out their activity, such as the regulatory framework and the disparities in regulatory criteria between Autonomous Communities, as well as the absence of technical reference manuals for professionals in the sector.

Compared to 2018, the sector is less concerned about the effects of on-line sales of swimming pool products, but sees a need to find a solution to the consumer’s lack of knowledge about the companies’ technical competence.

As for the products in most demand this year, salt electrolysis equipment leads the ranking, followed by LED lighting systems, process automation solutions such as robot cleaners as well as dosing and control systems continue to be in high demand. In addition, this year, the ‘Barometer’ confirms the consolidation of the demand for innovations that enhance connectivity (IoT) and generate new services associated with swimming pools. At the same time, there has been an increase in the implementation of solutions that enhance sustainability in the sector (energy-saving systems for water, air conditioning systems with solar panels, covers, etc.).

The president of Piscina & Wellness Barcelona and executive president of Fluidra, Eloi Planes, stresses that concepts such as smart, water quality, digitalisation and wellness will transform the way the sector presents its innovations to end customers over the next two years. “Companies will sell pool-related services more than products”, has predicted Planes, a trend that the ‘Barometer’ has also picked up, and one that will present its results more widely during the fair.

The swimming pool sector in Spain is made up of 2,500 companies that employ 70,000 people directly and indirectly.

About ASOFAP
The Spanish Association of Swimming Pool Professionals (ASOFAP) is the entity that integrates and represents the entire value chain of the sector (manufacturers, distributors, industrial pool professionals and maintenance). Among its objectives are the greater professionalisation and internationalisation of the sector through training measures and cross-border agreements, the approval of trade show policies governing the sector, the fight against uncertified practitioners and representing the sector in relations with the various competent authorities and society.

About Piscina & Wellness Barcelona
Held every two years, it is one of the most prominent events in the international calendar of the swimming pool sector and the most international in Europe in its special field. It is organised by Fira de Barcelona in collaboration with the ASOFAP. In its next edition, which will take place from 15th to 18th October, it will bring together more than 350 direct exhibitors from 25 countries at the Gran Via venue.

Barcelona, 3rd October 2019

Images of the press conference (3 October) here

Images of Piscina & Wellness Barcelona here

Gloria Dilluvio / Maria Dolores Herranz
Tel. +34 93 233 21 72 – 2541
gdilluvio@firabarcelona.com
mdherranz@firabarcelona.com