Networking Sales Continue to Help Drive U.S. Commercial Channel Sales, According to NPD

PORT WASHINGTON, NEW YORK, APRIL 3, 2014 - Networking sales through U.S. commercial channels increased by 4 percent in the twelve months ending February 2014 helping the entire channel to a nearly 3 percent increase to almost $51 billion according to NPD’s Commercial Reseller and Distributor Track data. Networking sales generated $7.7billion, making it the 3rd largest product segment for the U.S. commercial channel - PCs were the largest.

The access point segment was the strongest in the networking category, growing 20 percent to $715 million, which followed a 26 percent increase from the year before. Despite slowing volumes, with sales up just 2.4 percent, Switches were by far the largest networking product category through U.S. commercial channels, with sales of almost $2.6 billion, accounting for one-in-three dollars spent on network products over the last year. “Corporate spending on IT has remained strong as evidenced by the steadily improving industry results for networking products, said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysts, The NPD Group. “While switches have been the mainstay corporate networking product for years, other categories like access points and network security appliances have begun to see accelerated growth. Still switch volume remains the primary volume product among commercial channels.”

Cisco led the switch market with almost two-thirds of the revenue and 6 percent growth, even as the category increased just 2 percent. The top five brands accounted for almost 90 percent of all sales. Cisco, however, despite its large revenue share has been losing ground in the access point segment to companies like Meraki, Meru, and Aruba. Outside the top 5 brands, sales increased by 57 percent led by companies like Ruckus and Aerohive.

Top 5 Switch and Access Point Brands

Switches Access Points
Brand 2014 Dollar Share 2014 Dollar Growth Brand 2014 Dollar Share 2014 Dollar Growth
Cisco 66.5 6.2 Cisco 55.2 7.7
HP 12.4 -11.9 Aruba 10.8 39.4
Juniper 3.8 16.3 Meru 3.3 16.7
F5 3.4 -25.9 HP 3.3 -17.1
Brocade 3.0 11.1 Meraki 3.0 49.4

Source: The NPD Group/Commercial Reseller and Distributor Track

Cisco dominates overall networking products sales with a nearly 58 percent share of revenue. However their sales grew at just 3.5 percent over the last year, slightly below the market average. After Cisco the next five largest suppliers, HP, Juniper, F5, Brocade and Riverbed accounted for just 20 percent of the sales volumes with similar growth of 3.5 percent. The rest of the market has driven network revenue growth, as sales outside of the top six brands increased by 6.5 percent to $1.7 billion.

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