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商业

三星的厨房野心

Stephanie N. Mehta 2013年06月19日

占据智能手机市场销量的头把交椅之后,韩国电子业巨头三星开始把视线转向了厨房,希望厨房家电市场复制手机市场的成功,而它倚重的法宝依然是创新。

    三星电子(Samsung Electronics)能否像征服电视和智能手机市场一样,征服厨房家电市场呢?

    在电视和具备高级计算能力的手机市场,这家韩国科技行业巨头的销量已经高居榜首。现在,它声称,它同样希望在2015年成为全球最大家用电器供应商。这是一个非常远大的目标,因为据欧睿国际(Euromonitor International)的市场占有率数据显示,目前三星在冰箱与自动洗衣机/干洗机市场仅排在第五位,而在洗碗机、烤箱或微波炉领域则尚未进入前五名。

    但三星电子联席CEO尹富根相信,通过对冰箱、烤箱、空调和洗衣机进行创新和提高科技水平,三星必然能够赢得全球消费者。尹富根说:“尽管消费者对这些产品的态度通常来说会非常情绪化,但家用电器领域依然有巨大的创新空间。”

    上周,尹富根前往纽约,出席了“三星家居”(Samsung House)开馆仪式,期间展示了公司的家用电器产品。这些产品包括:内置SodaStream气泡水机的冰箱,可以配制新鲜的气泡水,还有分成不同内室的烤箱,用户可以在不同的温度下进行烹饪。

    三星并不是家电行业的新面孔。实际上,早在1974年,它就针对韩国市场开发出了第一款冰箱,而三星品牌最初为许多美国人所熟知,凭借的正是它的台面微波炉产品。三星自称在美国的家电业务自2005年起就开始了飞速发展。

    近几年,三星正在稳步发展。据欧睿国际统计,它在全球冰箱销售中的份额从2007年的3.5%增加到去年的6.8%。但三星要想超越惠而浦(Whirlpool)成为市场领导者,尚有很长的路要走。目前,惠而浦的市场份额高达16%。

    尹富根经营三星电视业务的成功经历自然会为他实现家电业的野心铺平道路。许多销售电视的零售商同时也出售冰箱、炉灶和洗碗机。三星可以利用自身的规模与市场支配力,为厨房家电的最佳市场布局位置保驾护航。

    Can Samsung Electronics conquer kitchen appliances in the same way it has conquered televisions and smartphones?

    The Korean tech conglomerate, already the market leader in sales of TVs and mobile phones with advanced computing capabilities, says it also aims to be the world's No. 1 purveyor of home appliances by 2015. That's a lofty goal considering that today it is the No. 5 player in refrigerators and automatic washer/dryers, according to market share data from Euromonitor International, and isn't in Euromonitor's top 5 in dishwashers, ovens or microwaves.

    But Boo-Keun Yoon, co-CEO of Samsung Electronics, believes the company can win over global consumers by bringing innovation and a high-tech approach to refrigerators, ovens, air conditioners, and washing machines. "These are products that consumers are very emotional about, but there's a lot of room for innovation in home appliances." Yoon says.

    Yoon was in New York last week for the opening of Samsung House, a "pop-up" showroom for the company's housewares. Among the products on display: a refrigerator with a built-in SodaStream machine to dispense fresh bubby water, and an oven that allows customers to segment shelves to cook at different temperatures.

    Samsung isn't a newcomer to the business. Indeed, the company developed its first refrigerator for the Korean market in 1974, and many Americans first came to know the Samsung brand through its countertop microwaves. The company says its home appliance business in the U.S. started to take off on 2005.

    In recent years Samsung has been steadily gaining ground. Its share of worldwide refrigerator sales has edged up from 3.5% in 2007 to 6.8% last year, according to Euromonitor. But it has a long way to go to overtake market leader Whirlpool (WHR), which boasts 16% share.

    Yoon's success running the television business at Samsung certainly will help pave the way for his home appliance ambitions. Many of the same retailers who sell televisions also sell fridges and ranges and dishwashers; Samsung would be able to use its scale and market power to secure prime placement for its kitchen gear.

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