Video Sales Surge after Summer Respite

Factory shipments of video products reached 4.9 million units for the month of August, an 8% increase from last month, according to figures released recently by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). The organization says that year-to-date growth resulted in double-digit gains that boosted dealer sales to 38.7 million units, a 13% increase over 1999 figures.

While statistics for year-to-date product categories improved, points out the CEA, monthly sales were not as robust. With the exception of analog direct-view televisions, all other categories experienced incremental growth during the month.

The figures indicate that TV/VCR combinations demonstrated the largest increase in August, advancing 6%, to 389,000 units, with end-of-summer sales resulting in camcorders and VCR decks fast-forwarding by 5%. DVD players, "building on their phenomenal momentum," ended the month with stellar sales of 557,617 units, states the CEA. The group's Todd Thibodeaux adds that, "despite an unremarkable August, year-to-date figures continued to flourish, especially for cornerstone products like VCR decks and analog direct-view TVs. In the coming months, sales will abound as retailers gear up for the holiday buying season."

So far this year, CEA results show that TV/VCR combinations are up 13%, to 3 million units, while camcorders are up 19%, with 3.4 million units shipped so far this year. Confirming that bigger is better, projection-TV sales reached 771,000 units, an increase of 19%, while year-to-date sales of DVD players now stand at 3.8 million units.