Maternity wear showing growth


1413394_24113341Despite a slower growth in the number of births per year, the maternity wear industry is showing no signs of slowing down, a new IBISWorld report has found.

According to the study, the boom in online shopping and an increasing range of fashionable maternity wear has led to strong industry revenue growth. As a result, industry revenue is expected to grow by an annualised 6.2 per cent over the five years through 2013 to 14, to total $178.4 million. Around 4.9 per cent growth is forecasted for 2013-14.

Over the 10 years through 2018-19, industry value added is expected to grow by an annualised 5.3 per cent, compared with GDP growth of 2.5 per cent  per annum.

This suggests the industry is growing faster than the overall economy.

The reason for this is that those women who are choosing to have children are spending greater amounts on maternity clothing.

“Although general clothing retailers have suffered from weak consumer sentiment and subdued discretionary spending, the industry has benefited from strong demand for maternity wear from fashion-conscious consumers,” Lauren Magner, industry analyst for IBISWorld, said.

“The increase in the number of females in the labour force has led to strong demand for fashionable and professional maternity clothing that is appropriate for the work environment,” Magner said.

A large proportion of industry retailers are online only operators, and these players have benefited significantly from the rising popularity of online shopping.As it can often be difficult to visit multiple bricks and-mortar stores during the last months of pregnancy, many women may prefer to purchase maternity wear online from the comfort and convenience of their home.

Over the next five years, industry enterprise growth is expected to continue to increase, although at a slower pace than the past five years.

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