SUPPLIER  Industry Sales

4Q 2010 Industry Sales Report: Industry Sales Increase 10.5%

Research by Larry Basinait

On January 12, 2011, ASI commissioned an exclusive survey to estimate the direction of industry sales for the fourth quarter 2010 among suppliers, as well as a forecast for 2011. Invitations went to ASI supplier members who were the primary contact with their company. A panel was set up that included large suppliers in the industry. The results of this survey will be published on

The 1Q 2011 Sales Study Report will be published in May 2011.


  • During the fourth quarter, there was a year-over-year increase in sales among ASI supplier members of 10.5%. This is the fourth consecutive increase in sales vs. the corresponding quarter one year ago.

  • Sales for all of 2011 are expected to be higher than 2010 by 84% of suppliers. Larger suppliers in particular are the most optimistic about 2011.

Detailed Findings:

Supplier vs. Distributor Sales

  • Supplier sales for the fourth quarter 2010 increased by 10.5%, the fourth consecutive increase.

  • The increase in sales for suppliers was somewhat higher than for distributors, who had a 9.3% increase. Suppliers have reported marginally higher increases in revenue than distributors throughout the year.

2013 Sales vs. 2012 Sales

How did your fourth quarter 2010 sales compare to your third quarter 2009 sales?

  • Nearly two-thirds (60%) of respondents reported an increase in sales, and only 16% reported a decrease. This suggests a net increase in industry sales for the quarter, and shows consistent increases throughout 2010.

2013 Sales vs. 2012 Sales

How did your third quarter 2010 sales compare to your third quarter 2009 sales? (Continued)

  • Both larger (more than $10 million in sales) and smaller (less than $10 million in sales) suppliers reported increases in sales as compared to the corresponding quarter from the prior year. Larger suppliers reported a greater increase (7.4%) than smaller suppliers (3.1%).

2013 Sales vs. 2012 Sales By company size

How do you feel your sales for all of 2011 will compare to your sales in 2010?

  • Most suppliers (84%) feel sales for 2011 will be higher than in 2010. Smaller suppliers in particular rare optimistic with their forecast for 2011; well over three-quarters (85%) feel sales in 2011 will be higher than in 2010, vs. about three-quarters (77%) of larger suppliers anticipating an increase. However, larger suppliers generally reported a better year in 2011, so an even more robust year in 2011 would be more challenging.

  • Among those anticipating an increase in sales over 2010, the average increase is 13.1%.

2013 Sales vs. 2012 Sales


A total of 196 supplier firms responded to the survey request out of 2,350 firms invited, resulting in an 8.3% response rate. An incentive of a drawing for $250 was offered.