Thermomix celebrated a multifaceted victory in Spain this past week with the announcement of record-breaking sales of 96.5 million euros in 2011 — an increase of more than 3% over 2010. Even more remarkable is that this feat was achieved despite — and quite possibly because of — an economic downturn. No matter how you slice it, these are numbers to be proud of in a country where economic woes are more likely to be front page news.
Thermomix shines bright in dark economic times
In a recent press release Spanish headquarters reported sales of 113,124 TM31 units at 956 Euros — and all accomplished without conventional advertising and retail exposure. This puts Thermomix into just under 1.5 million Spanish homes to date. The Vorwerk-built German kitchen machine was first introduced to Spain in 1978. Over the course of 34 years popularity has been steadily fueled by the passion of its fans and Thermomix now enjoys 80% brand awareness in Spain, with 9% market penetration. Indeed, Spain leads all countries for number of Thermomix per households beating Italy, France, and Germany.
So what about the numbers?
If you think these numbers sounds like a marketing brochure, I wouldn’t blame you. I am not a numbers person, but I like these. Why? Because there is I think, an important message in the numbers. The message is for people who may not yet now what a Thermomix is. Many who visit here are in that position. As was I in the summer of 2009. Living in a country where Thermomix was — and still is — virtually unknown I was curious, doubtful, and hungry for information about a very expensive machine that begged for a place in my kitchen. I had no friend or neighbour to turn to for honest feedback. I wanted opinions yes, and more. I wanted facts. And these numbers are fact.
So to all ye Thermomix-curious who want to know what drives the hype — I say “read on”. Let the numbers speak their truth. Thermomix is popular around the world because it makes cooking more easy, more healthy, and more fun. Whether you live in Spain, Germany, Australia, Italy, France, UK, or Malaysia — Thermomix is something you will enjoy using for the rest of your life. It will feed your family, your creativity, and your passion. All those Spaniards (and Australians) can’t be wrong.
Strength in numbers, strength in demonstrators
Thermomix Spain’s newest CEO Ignacio Fernández Simal told media (1, 2, 3, 4) last week that he credits the company’s success to a powerful sales network of 7000 demonstrators working from 65 well-supported branches. The force of Spanish Thermomix consultants (90% female) works for a commission of 123 – 250 euros ($150 – $300 AUD) per unit. And selling six machines in one month gains the demonstrator a free Thermomix! It’s reported that last year’s star demonstrator sold 300 Thermomix machines — almost one per day!
This bank of teaching-consultants grows yearly, but even more during hard times. Part of the success of 2011 is attributed to economic recession which created renewed desire for home-cooked meals and fresh opportunities for those turning to self-employment. (Provided the consultant owns a Thermomix, it’s possible to generate income without further investment.)
Beyond kitchen machines, Thermomix cookbooks account for additional sales of 2 million. A monthly magazine with circulation of 65,000 adds one more million to the pot.
More growth potential
According to directors of Thermomix Spain there is still room for Thermomix to gain popularity in all areas. The goal for 2012 is well underway towards increasing sales by 10% in all areas, and particularly in northern Spain.
In a land that is famous for its chefs, restaurants (one boasts 12 Thermomix machines!), and regional cuisines Thermomix is the ideal tool for ny home cook to prepare world-class meals with fresh natural ingredients. Most popular in Spain are Thermomix recipes for seafoods and meat stews, soups, and steamed dishes.