Stationery and Office Supplies Market in Japan: Key Research Findings 2020
Yano Research Institute (the President, Takashi Mizukoshi) has conducted a survey on the domestic stationery and office supply market and has found out the market trend by product, the trend of market players, and the future perspectives.
The domestic stationery and office supply market in FY2019 declined by 3.0% on a year-on-year basis to 444.1 billion yen. While writing instrument which had been an enhancer of the overall market with big hit in the personal use product took downward turn from FY2017, paper products and office supplies is witnessing harsh business environment in general due to the low birthrates and advancements of office digitization.
All three categories had shown a decrease from the previous fiscal year, with writing instrument by 2.9% to 94.7 billion yen, paper products by 2.5% to 150.5 billion yen, and office supplies by 3.3% to 198.9 billion yen.
Impact of COVID-19
Since many of the makers in the stationery and office supply market have been shifting their business to personal use products due to stagnation in corporate demand, temporary closures and shortened work hours at stationery stores during the declaration of state of emergency had tremendous impact on their business performance. Accompanied by a sharp drop in inbound tourist demand, negative effects of the pandemic hit large-scale stores in the metropolitan areas harder compared to those in the regional areas. Moreover, a shift in consumer purchasing behavior, i.e. from brick-and-mortar stores to e-commerce, also has a huge influence over the demand at the stores, such as spontaneous impulse purchase.
Although school closure at school enrollment season, the peak period of demand for stationery, had significant negative impact, schoolchildren demand is on recovery trend since schools reopened. Meanwhile, environment for corporate demand is still in a difficult condition, as business activities at companies are stagnated or as work from home is becoming widespread. Many of the makers in the stationary and office supply market are focusing more to the development of products for personal use.
In terms of products, demand is rising for items corresponding to keywords such as anti-bacterial and droplet precaution as well as items related to the needs of work from home/telework, yet it is not enough to leverage the entire market growth. It is also noted that demand for items related to art and DIY are also growing relative to at-home consumption.
Considering the negative impacts by COVID-19 such as temporary closures/short business hours at stationery shops particularly in the metropolitan areas, school closures at the time of school enrollment which is usually the peak demand for stationeries, decline in demand for office supply as work from home spreads, and restrictions on purchasing behaviors due to staying home, the market for FY2020 is expected to shrink sharply to 406.4 billion yen, down 8.5% from the preceding fiscal year.
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