Logitech’s supply chain bet pays off as sales smash estimates

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Computer peripheral maker Logitech reported FYQ2’21 (calendar Q3) revenues which jumped 74.7% year over year. That was 48.5% points higher than analysts’ expectations according to S&P Global Market Intelligence figures. The growth has come as a result of demand driven by the popularity of gaming and a world where people are “increasingly working from multiple locations” according to CEO Bracken Darrell. The firm also increased its revenue guidance for the 12 months to March 31, 2021 to growth of 35% to 40% from a prior range of 10% to 13%. 

In comparison to other consumer electronics firms, such as Peloton as outlined in Panjiva’s Oct. 21 research, Logitech was able to leverage the increase in demand by ensuring it had products available with Brackell indicating that “in the early days of COVID-19 when we made a supply bet … knowing that we’re going to take some inventory risk“.

That bet can be seen in a surge in U.S. seaborne imports linked to the firm in June and July of 48.6% and 32.3% year over year respectively, Panjiva’s data shows, led by increased shipments of speakers / headphones as the firm benefited from increased teleconferencing. More recently though there’s been a shift in supplies with total imports up by just 0.9% in September as imports of keyboards, mice and speakers are scaled up while other products are reduced.

Logitech shipments recovered in June, slow in September

Chart segments change in U.S. seaborne imports linked to Logitech by product.   Source: Panjiva

Logitech’s not been the only beneficiary in the surge in demand for headphones and speakers, though others have come later to the market. Total U.S. seaborne imports of headphones and speakers didn’t start to improve until August with an increase of 25.2% followed by a 48.1% rise in September. 

Gaming specialist Corsair has been particularly slow with shipments only rising by 220% in September. Apple meanwhile has seen a surge of 75.0% year over year in September after growth of 16.7% in August due to shipments of its Homepod range. Traditional supplies meanwhile have grown more modestly with JVCKenwood’s shipments only increasing by 25.0% in August and declining by 10.0% in September.

Apple upturn arrives later than Logitech’s

Chart segments change in U.S. seaborne imports of headphones and speakers by consignee.   Source: Panjiva

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