The two year trend for growth in commercial glazing looks set to continue towards the end of the decade, according to the latest Palmer Report, The Commercial Glazing Market in Great Britain 2015.
Author Robert Palmer says anyone reading his 2013 report could be forgiven some scepticism, when he forecast positive growth for the sector that had been shrinking for four years and lost 10% in the previous year alone, picking up a few record lows on the way.
Windows, representing over 50% of the total market, showed a 12% volume rise in that period, and only Shopfronts showed a 2% decline in volume – though actually a 12% rise in value terms).
The difference in volume and value growth observed in the 2013 report continues. Value growth from 2012 to 2014 is reported at 29%, with all categories showing important increases in average installed value, particularly curtain walling and roof glazing, at 20% and a huge 36% respectively.
Palmer expects a further 20% rise of the market to 2019, as a result of a growing wider economy.
Important growth in two of the four biggest industry sectors for commercial glazing products – Commercial Offices and Apartment Blocks – and, to a lesser extent, in the most important sector Education, helped to drive the expansion of the last two years. Indeed, it’s unsurprising that Curtain Walling, with 35% of its market in office buildings, was the fastest growing product (13.4%).
Looking forward, different industry sectors polarise somewhat: glazing products in commercial offices will continue to rocket up by 39% to 2019 as business investment, employment and the wider economy grow, while apartment blocks are looking at overall net growth of just 4%, as new government policies on buying and selling high value properties come into effect. Education is forecast to grow, by 22%, in spite of continuing public sector cuts, thanks to private funding of school and university buildings.
Entrance doors, the second biggest product category, have shown and will continue to show growth rather below the market, perhaps due to the fact that this product tends to be rely more on slightly less buoyant sectors such as Education and Retail.
Aluminium continues to be by far the most important frame material, and in fact increased its market share over the time period to 81%. Although Aluminium/ Timber Composites showed an even higher, 46%, rise over the two years, at 5% of the market they don’t look to be troubling the leader any time soon. The aluminium window market is at a historic level, and will actually reach an all-time high by 2019 of 1.74m frames.
Palmer’s report also looks at the Solar Shading market, which underperformed the market at 10% value growth over the last two years, but looks set to see 28% growth to 2019 as the benefits of the product become more widely known.
Triple Glazing still appears to be a niche product, representing just 4% of the market; and Fire Resistant Glazing, measured for the first time in the 2015 report, even more so for now – just 1.2% of all window and 1.6% of all curtain walling installations.
The Commercial Glazing Market in Great Britain, 2015 edition, was developed by carrying out structured interviews with over 400 glazing installers, systems companies and main contractors, representing over 7,000 projects, between June and August 2015.
As ever, this was backed up by an extensive desk research programme, as well as Palmer Market Research’s proprietary database which stretches back for over 30 years, and from external sources such as the Construction Products Association, Oxford Economics, the Office for National Statistics.