February 08, 2001

Total audio revenues of manufacturer-to-dealer sales grew by six percent in 2000, reaching $8.6 billion, according to figures released today by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). Portable audio, separate components, systems and aftermarket autosound all showed gains over 1999 numbers.

Portable audio shot up 11 percent to nearly $2.7 billion for the year. Portable CD products proved to be a powerful sub-category (comprising almost two-thirds of portable audio-the largest sector), moving up 13 percent for the year. During 2000, portable compressed audio file devices (MP3 type players) sold 587,000 units, totaling $107 million.

In December, audio systems enjoyed a 15 percent increase in dollar sales over 1999 comparisons. In all, audio systems were up by seven percent over 1999 figures to $2.2 billion in 2000. As the second most successful sector-both in terms of growth and volume-much of the gains are due to the never-failing sales of compact audio systems and Home-Theater-in-a-Box.

Separate audio components also fared well in 2000, moving up six percent to sales of $1.5 billion. Sales of receivers with Dolby Digital Surround Sound-a product critical to home theater set-ups-helped boost this category by climbing 43 percent to $512 million. Non-PC CD-R units amassed $129 million in revenues during 2000.

Aftermarket autosound gained one percent to $2.2 billion. In dash CD players alone gained 12 percent, topping $1 billion in 2000.

”2000 was a solid year for audio sales,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CEA. ”With the continued interest of consumers’ in new surround sound formats, DVD-Audio and other digital products that complete the audio experience, we can expect 2001 to be another successful year for audio sales.”

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) represents more than 625 U.S. companies involved in the design, development, manufacturing and distribution of audio, video, mobile electronics, communications, information technology, multimedia and accessory products, as well as related services, that are sold through consumer channels. Combined, these companies account for more than $70 billion in annual sales.

For more information at http://www.ce.org

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