Around 25,000 trade visitors from all over the world are expected at the Kind + Jugend trade fair in Cologne from 19 to 21 September. 1,239 suppliers from 49 countries will exhibit on an area of 110,000 square metres. In addition, the continuing baby boom in Germany will ensure a great willingness to buy in the exhibition halls.

Rise in birth rates

According to the Federal Statistical Office, about 787,600 children were born in Germany last year. Thus, the birth rate (Germany) increased by 0.3 percent. One possible cause, according to statistics, would be the high number of immigrants. As is the increase in maternal age: more and more women are waiting longer to have children. At present, the average age is around 30.6 years.

Increase in market volume at Kind + Jugend

Also on the market volume above the children’s boom a positive influence: Hansjürgen Heinick, Senior Consultant at the Institute for Retail Research (IFH Cologne), confirms that the segment of classic hardware such as prams, buggies, child car seats, bottles and pacifiers has grown disproportionately by 1.3 percent compared to the previous year. At the same time, however, average expenditure per child has fallen. This is due to the focus on price-attractive forms of distribution. However, the safety aspect is still relevant for parents: Here the Stiftung Warentest-Siegel is particularly important to the clientele.

Market shifts

“In the online sector other actors are successful than in the stationary sector. The great hope of the stationary trade that the customer will remain with the help of his online shop is countered by the actual buying behaviour”, says Dr. Kai Hudetz, Managing Director of IFH Cologne. In principle, all products today must be able to be sold via the Internet. In fact, brands are also very much sought after online.

Future consumer behaviour

Who is still regarded today as a source of impetus or inspiration? Bloggers, influencers, your own circle of friends? Customer behaviour today is becoming more and more erratic and unpredictable. “Various ECC studies show that smart natives use their smartphones for the majority of their online purchases, while older consumers mainly use them for information,” says retail expert Hudetz, explaining the influence of social media.

Increased competition

Currently there is a lot of cut-throat competition on the market among the producers of various sectors. Well-known brands change owners, disappear completely or at least for a certain period of time. Nevertheless, new companies, e.g. in the child seat segment, are being founded in Germany with great confidence. In addition, some companies are focusing on new product categories: For example, baby carriage manufacturers are increasingly producing car seats, plush animal manufacturers are producing children’s furniture or baby seat brands are producing interior collections.

Digitality and eMobility

Important topics at this year’s Kind + Jugend 2019 include digitality and eMobility. For example, installation control, seating comfort, infotainment and communication options in the vehicle interior play a central role in child seats. The monitoring of the newborn infant in the infant carrier is also being expanded - to include continuous monitoring of temperature, heart rate and respiratory rate. Based on eBikes and eScooters, eStrollers are now also being launched on the market. Two companies from Asia and Scandinavia are competing with each other in this market with powerful batteries and motors.

Sustainability on the advance

What is already happening in many sectors such as fashion and cosmetics is now also increasingly looking for customers in the children’s sector: the reduction of one’s own CO2 footprint and the recyclability of products. Materials such as bamboo, wood, porcelain, glass and stainless steel are used more frequently in bottles and baby dishes instead of plastics, while wool and organic cotton are used more often in covers and editions. An Italian pram model uses polyester fibres from used plastic bottles.


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Link: The Kind + Jugend takes place from 19.09 to 22.09.

Images: Kind + Jugend / Messe Köln