The IV ADIME Convention brought together hundreds of representatives of manufacturers, wholesalers and suppliers of the electrical material sector, certifying the good moment that the whole Sector is experiencing after the crisis caused by COVID-19.
Eduard Sarto: "Despite the seriousness of the situation, our Sector has been able to maintain itself in 2020 and grow in 2021".
The key: the customer service of the professional wholesaler and the promotion of eCommerce
The market has become more complex, with more players and with increasingly aggressive new business models.
Javier Díaz-Jiménez: "At the macroeconomic level we cannot make predictions, we are going to a new world not to recover the past". In an optimistic scenario with a sustained recovery: "we will return to a more reasonable, less volatile world, although we do not know when".
We have all the opportunities for the electrification of the economy, digitization and some risks that we must know how to manage.
The executive president of ADIME, Eduard Sarto, showed at the event how the professional distribution sector has registered a growth of more than 20% compared to 2020 and 7% over 2019. "We are in a situation that has exceeded most optimist expectations", said Sarto, who opened the congress with the optimism offered by the figures, which depict the present and a better future in the Sector.
The distribution of electrical material justifies these good results, in the words of Sarto, in that "we have been closer than ever to our customers, services have increased and digitization has been strongly promoted" and "new business lines have contributed to more sustainable growth".
The Association encouraged the whole Sector, with the endorsement of the data, to work to lead the sector transformation.
Macro data volatility
Javier Díaz-Jiménez, professor at IESE and the University of Minnesota, specialist in macroeconomics, analyzed what the post-COVID environment is like, or, as he said, “scenario with-Covid”, and what can be expected from the market in the short and medium term.
"At the macroeconomic level we cannot make predictions, we are going to a new world not to recover the past," said Díaz-Jiménez, who articulated much of his presentation in an environment marked by "volatility and uncertainty."
We do not know how the “con-Covid” will evolve and to what extent it will condition variables such as GDP, inflation or the price of raw materials. But he ventured "a more reasonable and less volatile world", encouraging the entire Sector, about which he echoed the good expectations presented by ADIME, to bet on projects without fear. And in this regard, he recalled that the macro variables "are a delayed and noisy signal from the micro", therefore, the companies are the ones that know how they are doing and what their reality is.
To the questions of the attendees, a recommendation, the Next Generation funds are an opportunity "do not let it escape" said the speaker, for whom the group is fundamental. In this sense, he said that SMEs should make noise together, the Spanish Administration is not able to spend them and, in the end, they will give them if you are there present, not alone, but as a group. And he highlighted in this context, the fundamental value of the Association to lobby.
A future sector
Moderated by Xavier Lesauvage, the debate of the IV Meeting addressed the future of the sector. It had Professor Díaz-Jiménez; with Estela Gallego, currently Advisory Vocal in the General Sub directorate of Digitization and Collaborative Environments of the Ministry of Industry; and with Josu Gómez, second vice president of ADIME and CEO of Aelvasa.
Estela Gallego highlighted the good health of the distribution, as well as its financial and organizational strength, which has allowed it to face the challenge of the pandemic and emerge stronger. She clearly defended that the responsibility for digital transformation has to be assumed by the management of the companies.
Javier Díaz-Jimenez agreed with Sarto's words, that circumstances have favoured the sector, which has proven essential in a crisis situation and essential in a future that tends towards electrification. He also stressed that, despite the large electricity companies putting, and will put, obstacles, "the production and distribution of energy is going to be decentralized and that is good news for the sector." Everything indicates that, indeed, we are in a sector of the future, oriented towards decarbonisation, energy efficiency and electric mobility.
Josu Gómez highlighted the importance of collaboration between the three agents of the value chain: manufacturing that has been innovating, distribution, previously in its wake, now at a good general level and, of course, the installers whom, in the words of the vice president of ADIME, “we must help”. The way forward is to go together, in this sense, he also reaffirmed the essentiality of the sector and demanded collaboration from manufacturers in the training of professionals throughout the entire chain and, without a doubt, in the best management of the current shortage of supplies with more communication.
Main challenges of the Sector:
E. Gallego: to achieve as differential value a level of sector digitization as a whole, higher than the average.
J. Díaz-Jiménez: in the short term we have a volatile environment, in the medium term there is disruption, therefore, the sector will also be different.
J. Gómez: Bet on the digital channel without forgetting the essence of the people who make up the three agents of our value chain. "Sector more alive than ever, but let's not let the large numbers blind us".
The president of ADIME, Eduard Sarto closed the IV Convention by thanking everyone for their collaboration and inviting attendees to the V Sector Congress that will take place on May 19, 2022.
Founded in 1995, ADIME is the National Association of Distributors of Electrical Material of Spain.
ADIME has focused a good part of its activity in recent years on strengthening the information and defense of its associates, both in preventive measures and in support of the performance of its business activity.
ADIME has continued growing in the number of partners in 2021. It represents 112 distribution companies: 72% of the Sector's sales volume and 26% of the Sector's companies in Spain.(*)
The actions carried out by ADIME to the Administrations in defence of the Distribution activity stand out, which allowed the group to be considered as "essential service operators insofar as they ensure the correct operation of critical facilities and infrastructures" during the worst moments of the pandemic. And also, those directed to the Government demanding the activation of measures and actions necessary to ensure the maintenance of the payment chain during the most complex moments.
ADIME has continued promoting management tools, information, studies and sectoral analysis, such as Plataforma Electronet and ETIM, the Trend Barometer and the Libro Blanco de la Distribución ADIME, among others.
More information at adime.org.
(*) Very fragmented sector: 8.5% specify 66% of volume and 71.5% specify only 13% of volume