Mid-Year Audio Sales Revenues at All-Time High

Last week, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) released numbers indicating that factory audio sales (as opposed to sales through to consumers) for the first six months of 2000 have surpassed all previous mid-year dollar sales. The CEA adds that the $3.85 billion in sales to dealers put audio sales 12% ahead of the same time last year.

According to the statistics, separate home components are up 16% in the year to date, to $727 million, with a 23% increase in June alone. Within this category, home CD equipment (particularly CD-R) has grown to 32%, while receivers (led by Dolby Digital units) have also performed well, with a mid-year increase of 23%. Speakers also performed well in this category, with dollar sales increasing by 14% over last season for the year to date.

Amid all of the good news, portable audio revenue has shown the most dramatic growth, claims the CEA—up 25% in this year, to $1.1 billion. Within this category, the CEA reports that revenue from CD players leapt up 37%, while revenue from CD boomboxes increased by 23%, with the combined sales of these two categories just shy of $700 million. Aftermarket autosound is reported to be up 3%, to $1.1 billion, with revenues from in-dash CD players comprising about 45% of all aftermarket autosound sales while still showing growth at 11% for the year to date.

CEA president Gary Shapiro comments that "audio continues to be the 'comeback kid' of consumer electronics in 2000. Surround sound is one of the killer applications driving consumer interest, setting the stage for the new generation of surround-sound audio products, like DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD. We look forward to what promises to be a strong holiday season for audio sales."

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