The combined population of Australia and New Zealand is 27.4 million (Aus 22.9m; NZ 4.5m).
The size of the Australian market is:
- Australian raw wool production (greasy wool value) (ABS 2015) A$2.53 billion
- Trade & service industry (AWI SBTM) A$0.97 billion
- TCF manufacturing industries (TFIA March 2012) A$2.83 billion
- Clothing retail turnover (ABS 2006b & Global Demographics) A$19 billion
- The national expenditure on clothes in New Zealand is A$1.6 billion.
Australia’s casual lifestyle and moderate climate leads Australians to spend less on clothing than people in otherwise comparable Western economies. To put this in an international perspective, Australia’s population is about one-third the population of the United Kingdom, but its clothing market is only one-seventh the size.
- Australia and New Zealand’s Southern Hemisphere location means that its seasonal cycles are the reverse of those in Europe and effectively puts Australia and New Zealand six months behind the leading edge of ‘global’ fashion trends, a situation which can be advantageous for advanced test marketing purposes
- The increased workforce participation of women, the availability of credit, new mass communications technologies and the changing strategies of retail firms have altered local buying patterns. The media, now extended to include the internet, cable TV and email, has been influential in altering the character of consumer preferences
- Department stores represent a significant proportion of total clothing sales. In Australia this is dominated by two national firms operating in mainstream markets (Myer and David Jones). Both have sought to attract local fashion designers to exclusive ‘store within a store’ concessions where there is a significant presence of wool and Woolmark-certified products for the winter/autumn season.
- Two national retailers – Target and Kmart – compete in the discount sector.
Opportunity for Wool
The Woolmark Company investment will target wool production and input supply industries.
While retail consumption is relatively small compared to other countries, leveraging market opportunities with wool production in Australia will support broader Woolmark marketing programs.