In this article, we are covering the democratic reasons why the Hi-Fi industry in Brazil is close to non-existing and how this also affects other consumer industries.
You might know that São Paulo is recognized as the city of shopping in Brazil. The numbers of stores and shopping malls are amazing and you can find everything from cheap Chinese goods to high-end Italian fashion. However there is one industry that is close to non-existing in the main stream shopping locations. It is the hi-fi industry.
Brazilian men live with their parents
Internationally, the mainstream hi-fi industry largely appeals to young men with disposable income and a passion for sound and music. But Brazilian men are different from their international brothers.
There is currently a strong cultural shift going on in Brazil: young adults are moving from home later now than 20 years ago and it's now considered socially acceptable to live with your parents until you are 30 years old and then move straight into a relationship. Data from IBGE shows that in 2008 there were 8 million people between 25 and 40 years old living with their parents, something that in the 70s, would have been unthinkable. This trend is the same across all classes and cannot be tied to the financial freedom young adults are living under.
It's not hard to imagine how this impacts the sales of large sub-wolfers and powerful amplifiers.
Brazilians isolate poorly
Depending on where in the world you are located, isolation in buildings will wary. If you are living in a country with cold winters, you most likely will have well isolated apartments. Although the reason to isolate in colder countries is intended to keep the apartments warm, it also isolates the sound and noise from the neighbors.
Brazilian apartments tend to be poorly isolated and neighbors are equally sensitive to noises. Poorly isolated apartments together with sensitive neighbors are not an optimal combination for promoting hi-fi sales.
Car stereos are prime targets for thefts
You might think that car stereo sales wouldn't be affected by the fact that Brazilian men live with their parents or by the poor isolations, and you are right. The problem with car stereo sales is that car stereos are prime target for thefts.
This, combined with the fact that a significant part of young Brazilian men see car insurance as an unnecessary monthly expense, significantly shrinks the market for car stereos.
So how does a Brazilian listen to music?
Brazilians like the rest of the world are listening to music and they are also willing to spend a decent amount of money doing so; however they don't buy the traditional Hi-Fi equipment that young men with disposable income in North America and Europe would do.
Here is what's selling in Brazil:
- iPods and mobile devices
- Boomboxes to bring to the beach (or the park)
- Design Hi-Fi like Bang & Olufsen