Eurovent Market Intelligence (EMI), the European Statistical Office for the HVAC&R market, has released its market profile results for 2020 sales in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, based on a wealth of data collected. In the interview with the Eurovent Market Intelligence (EMI) team on the subject, valuable information about the air conditioning industry was given.
HVAC&R market in EMEA in 2020
The market for chillers (reversible or non-reversible) with a capacity of over 50 kW in the European Union (including the UK) is €1.1 billion in 2020.
In the 50-350 kW capacity range, there was an average of 8% decrease compared to the previous year. This decline reached 22% in the UK, 18% in Italy and 19% in Finland. As for units with power ratings above 700 kW, the decrease was more moderate at 4%. However, the decline in this segment was particularly sharp in Germany (down 29%), Italy (26% down) and the Netherlands (18% down). On the other hand, large increases were recorded in France (36% increase), Austria (37% increase) and Hungary (37% increase) in this segment.
In terms of refrigerants used for units above 50 kW, R410A and R134a continue to largely dominate the market, accounting for 70% and 10% of units sold, respectively. A third of the remaining units used the R32 and the other third used the R1234ze. The final third was split evenly between R407C, R513A and other mixed refrigerants (R452B, R454B, etc.).
The IT cooling market experienced the biggest change in the face of the pandemic and became the most dynamic segment. In 2018, the market volume in the EMEA region increased to 716 million Euros, of which 43% consisted of computer room air conditioners (CRAC), 15% row and rack coolers, and 7% telecommunication cooling units (portable TLCs). For air handling units and other evaporative cooling units, it has a rate of 37%. The second segment recorded the most growth in 2018, accounting for only 13% of the market. The largest markets, in order of size, were Germany with 123.9 million Euros, the United Kingdom with 73.4 million Euros and Russia with 58.8 million Euros. France and Italy followed closely behind Russia.
In the CRAC air conditioner market, the upward trend in units above 150 kW (primarily chilled water systems) accelerated in 2020 with the return of large data center projects. Many countries, especially Germany, achieved this growth, followed by England, France, South Africa, Egypt, Switzerland and Gulf countries. Variable refrigerant flow air conditioning systems (VRF) The external VRF air conditioner market showed 216,670 units sold in Europe in 2020, down about 5% from 2019. However, this overall decline also includes contrasting situations in various countries: sales increased by around 10% in Turkey, Europe’s largest market, while sales fell by an average of 8% in France, Italy and Germany, the next largest markets.
In terms of market segmentation, the increase in high-power VRFs continued, with units over 50 kW increasing from 15% in 2019 to 16.1% in 2020.
Top flow units, the most common, accounted for around 55% of sales, but are gradually leaving their share to side flow types. Cassette types (41%), ducted units (31%) and wall mounted units (22%) were the most common indoor units.
The European rooftop unit market fell by more than 13% in 2020, corresponding to approximately 11,200 units sold in Europe. Due to a small drop in sales (down 4%), Spain became Europe’s largest market, just ahead of France, with around 1,800 devices sold in 2020 (12% down). These are followed by Italy and Turkey, which have lost their momentum since 2019 (13% in 2019 and 22% in 2020). Medium-capacity units between 17 and 120 kW account for three-quarters of sales in Europe. Reversible roof units were also still the most popular, accounting for around 75% of the European market. Energy recovery units made up 20% of the market.
The European fan coil market fell 7% to 1.29 million units in 2020. Pandemic restrictions were the main reason for this, and almost all European countries experienced a noticeable decline. EU-28 down 8.9% on average, mainly due to sharp declines in major markets such as France (13.6% down), Italy (12% down), Spain (15.4% down) and the United Kingdom (21% down) lived. In some countries where restrictions were less stringent, such as Turkey (6.8% down) and Sweden (7.3% down), losses were comparatively weaker. Contrary to the general trend, some European markets experienced growth, such as Germany (up 4%) and Romania (up 9.2%). It is also worth noting that Denmark is the European country that experienced the biggest increase between 2019-2020, with sales rising by 22%, corresponding to 4,900 units in 2020.
Despite the downward trend, the market distribution of various fan coil units remained stable, with 2-pipe units continuing to account for three-quarters of the market. From a design standpoint, cased and caseless fan-coil units still accounted for 27% and 32% of the market, respectively, while cassette and duct models shared the remaining market.
Air Handling Units
Air Handling UnitsThe European air handling units market fell to €2.2 billion in 2020, after a small decline (2.8%). This change was mainly influenced by Germany, Europe’s largest market, which at EUR 413 million was considered relatively stagnant (down 2.4%). Similarly, the second largest market, Northern Europe, was fairly stable in 2020 (down 2.2% to €387 million). The third largest market, Eastern Europe, experienced a slightly larger decrease (€307 million, down 4.8%) in line with the overall change in the EU-28 (4.5% decrease). The difference between the EU-28 and the overall European market is primarily due to strong growth in non-EU countries such as Russia and CIS countries (€185 million, 11.7% increase). In addition, air handling units with integrated controls represented the majority (57%) of sales in Europe, with compact units accounting for almost 50% of sales.
In terms of energy class, class A or A+ units account for two-thirds of sales in Europe, with class A+ units holding the majority (accounting for 40% of units).
The market fell overall for heat exchangers, but was less affected by the crisis than for other products. For evaporators and condensers, sales in Europe were 348 and 171 million euros, respectively, in 2020. While evaporators remained stable, condensers dropped 13%. The market for dry coolers increased by 1.2% compared to 2019 to 312 million euros.
The biggest drops in evaporators; It was experienced in Italy, Ireland and South Africa with an average decrease of 25%. The strongest growth was in France, Bulgaria, Sweden, Turkey and Russia, with an increase of over 10%. The countries most affected by the crisis in dry coolers were Belgium, the Netherlands and Ireland, with a decrease of approximately 20%. On the other side of the scale were Portugal, Switzerland, Denmark and Turkey, each showing strong growth (10% or more).
The European cooling towers market contracted by 14% in 2020 to 130 million Euros. This market was dominated by Germany, which remained flat at €34 million in 2020. The next largest markets were Italy, France, the United Kingdom and Poland. These five countries alone account for about 70% of the European market. Outside the European Union, the largest markets continued to be Turkey (about €18 million), the Arabian Peninsula (about €18 million) and Russia (about €14 million). However, their situation is changing because Turkey experienced a growth of around 10% in sales, while the Arabian Peninsula and Russia experienced significant decreases in sales.
The European market continued to be dominated by low-power units with less than 10 cells (more than 50% of sales). The distribution between open and closed cooling towers was almost equal, with 51% open and 49% closed towers.
The European air filters market grew by more than 4% in 2020, with total sales of 1,050 million Euros. This growth is predominantly in the two largest countries, which together account for a third of the market and experience growth of around 6%; It originated in Germany and France. Scandinavian countries, which make up approximately 20% of the European market, did not experience this growth due to stagnation in sales.
Looking at the air filter categories, the most used Air filters are the ePM1, ePM5 and ePM10 categories, which accounted for 54% of the market and far ahead of the coarse filters (24%). Bag filters with a 41% market share and panel filters with a 34% market share continued to dominate the market in 2020, despite a downward trend.
The single-flow pool dehumidifier market fell 20% in 2020 in the EMEA region, with just over 5,000 units sold. This decrease was observed in all regions of the EMEA region, but was particularly pronounced in Italy, Spain, Portugal and Germany. Compared to 2019, the only countries where sales increased were Turkey and the United Kingdom. The single-stream devices market accounted for 60% of the market in 2020.
The dual-stream market, which accounts for the remaining 40% of the market, also fell by 19%, with sales of around 3,500 units. The decline was between 10% and 38% in all EMEA countries, with the exception of Turkey, where sales increased by 3%.
The European cold roof market decreased by 12.3% in 2020 to 63.2 million Euros. This decline was driven by Sweden, the largest market and accounting for a third of the overall European market, and other major markets such as the Netherlands, Germany and France. In Northern Europe, Norway, Finland and Denmark were relatively stable (0.9% increase) due to strong growth. Eastern Europe, the second largest market for cold ceilings, also saw growth, although slightly weaker (around 11%). The region with the highest growth is Russia and the CIS countries (Commonwealth of Independent States), where cold ceiling sales increased by 33.3%, positively affecting the European market, while the EU-28 market fell (down 15.1%).
Active cold ceilings, which account for 95% of sales, continued to be the most used products in Europe. 85% of them were integrated and 15% independent.
The air curtain EMEA market experienced a 9% decrease in 2020 with sales of approximately 332,000 units. This decline was mainly driven by a 6% drop by Russia and other CIS countries, which account for two-thirds of the EMEA market. Eastern Europe, the second largest market, also saw a 10% decline. Similarly, the Northern European market fell 20% in 2020. As a result, there was a 14% drop across the European Union, which is a larger drop than in the EMEA region. Also noteworthy is Turkey, which experienced the strongest growth (with an 8% increase) and rose to 10,000 units.
In the EMEA region, air curtains used in commercial areas and retail chains saw a 10% decline in 2020. However, it continued to make up the majority (93%) of units sold. The remaining 7% was sold to the industrial areas and cold storage markets. The downtrend did not change the market structure in terms of air curtain types sold. Electrically heated air curtains remain the most common type, accounting for around half of the European Union market and three-quarters of the EMEA market.
The adiabatic cooler market continued its upward trend, which started in 2018, with a growth of over 20% in 2020 in Europe. France and Germany account for more than half of European sales, with close to 92 million euros in 2020. The UK, Switzerland, Italy and the Netherlands are the next largest market group, accounting for more than 25% of the European market.
How is the data collection for 2021 going?
Yannick Cotrelle: The 2021 data collection effort was a huge success, involving more than 400 participants, an all-time record for EMI. This represents a 20% increase over the previous year. This growth is even more notable as it is consistent with all of our programs. Rooftop units, one of our oldest product programs with a fixed number of participants for several years, have grown from 17 to 25. The air filters group is another example, gaining 8 additional participants compared to 2020.
Anaïs Hamon: Producers are showing extraordinary interest in our datasets, as evidenced by the huge increase in participation as well as the fact that participants submitted their data earlier than in the previous year. This illustrates the real need for up-to-date and reliable market data, possibly as a result of the uncertainty surrounding Covid-19. Our participants appreciated the fact that we were able to provide faster results under these conditions compared to previous years.
Were you able to improve your services in the context of the ongoing crisis?
Beyza Aykurt: Continuous improvement of our data collections is one of EMI’s core values. For this reason, we have made every effort to offer new services to our participants. For example, we have developed the cold ceiling program on our website. Participants can now view results directly online with access to dynamic and interactive maps and graphs.
Another new development will be our first mid-year data collection, which will be released in early July. Participants in the heat exchanger program have informed us that they need up-to-date data throughout the year, so we have recommended the adoption of this new collection format. Our experiment may inspire other programs in the years to come.
Also have you started any new programs?
Yannick Cotrelle: We expanded our market reach by launching three new data collections this year. The data collection for water fan heaters and domestic heat pumps, launched in January of this year, had 9 and 30 participants, respectively. The collection already covers, on average, more than 50% of the market, around 70% in Scandinavian countries and 60% in France and Italy. This is a good start, especially for water fan heaters.
As for the cold display cabinet program, it was relaunched in a new format in July 2021, as participants opted to collect data quarterly. In addition to the refrigerated display type, the data collected also includes the refrigerant used and the EPREL energy efficiency index, this labeling is now mandatory for such products throughout the European Union.
Last year, EMI published a qualitative study entitled “Covid-19 report”. Have you prepared a similar report this year?
Anaïs Hamon: Given the high level of uncertainty in the market and the additional information needs of our participants, EMI conducted its first qualitative research in 2020 investigating the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on the HVAC&R market. This report explores a number of market scenarios that provide detailed qualitative information not typically found in EMI data collections.
This work was very well received by our participants, who gave us very positive feedback. Given that the Covid-19 pandemic is unfortunately still ongoing, we think it would be very helpful to conduct another qualitative analysis of its impact. We plan to work on this report this summer so we can send it to the participants in September.
What projects do you have for 2022?
Beyza Aykurt: We cannot say for certain which data collection studies will start next January; however, various options are currently being studied in collaboration with manufacturers. For example, we are considering collecting data on certain HVAC components such as valves (all types: one-way, ball, solenoid, expansion, etc.), filter driers and pressure switches. This project is led by market leaders, but any manufacturer can participate.
Restarting the program of heat recovery systems, including air handling units, is also being considered. This has been suspended for a few years, but the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has made manufacturers once again appreciate the need to understand market trends, the manufacturers themselves have contacted us about it. More generally speaking, we welcome any suggestions, so if manufacturers wish to propose a new market intelligence program to meet their needs, they are welcome to contact us.
We also want to increase our visibility, so we are trying to strengthen our presence on LinkedIn. We use this platform to publish our reports and the latest changes in our programs, analyze market trends, advise on how to best use the results of our data collections, and post reminders about our meetings and events. When it comes to attending events and meetings in person, LinkedIn is a powerful tool to stay connected with our attendees.