Metal and Mineral Wholesaling in Australia Industry Market Research Report Now Updated by IBISWorld

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With the mining boom tailing off, and the ongoing threat of wholesale bypass, the industry’s operating environment is set to change. For this reason, industry research firm IBISWorld has updated its report on the Metal and Mineral Wholesaling industry in Australia.

IBISWorld Market Research

IBISWorld Market Research

Despite threats of wholesale bypass, industry growth is projected to remain solid.

In the past five years, the Metal and Mineral Wholesaling industry has benefited from the mining investment boom, strong foreign demand and stable domestic growth. IBISWorld industry analyst Alen Allday states “demand from engineering construction for basic metal products (such as structural sections) has been particularly strong, reflecting investment in resource projects and associated infrastructure.” Firms supplying other sectors, including automotive manufacturers and the residential housing market, fared less well. Industry revenue is estimated to increase at an annualised 4.6% over the five years through 2013-14, driven by the strength of the mining investment boom and high foreign demand. Growth would likely have been even stronger if not for the ongoing trend of wholesale bypass. Miners and manufacturers are increasingly dealing directly with their customers, but the remote location of many resource projects allowed metal wholesalers in particular to play a key role in supplying engineering construction firms. Industry revenue is estimated to have surged in 2011-12 and to have continued growing strongly in 2012-13. In 2013-14, industry revenue is estimated to increase 2.4% to reach $32.8 billion. In this climate of strong activity, the industry was also able to lift its profit margins.

The gains made over the past five years are forecast to continue at a slower rate over the next five years. The mining investment boom is tailing off as resource projects move from the construction phase into production. As a result, opportunities for metal wholesalers to supply product into engineering construction will decline. According to Allday, “wholesale bypass by major mining houses means that new opportunities to act as a mineral ore or coal wholesaler will be limited.” Automotive production will continue to offer fewer opportunities to metal wholesalers. Despite slower forecast growth in domestic sales, foreign demand is forecast to increase strongly. A further bright spot for the industry is the expected general upward trend in dwelling construction activity and a pick-up in non-dwelling building construction. Firms servicing these markets will be relatively well placed over the next five years.

Market share concentration in the Metal and Mineral Wholesaling industry is considered to be low. Industry concentration has increased in the past five years the major players, CITIC Resources Australia Pty Ltd and Mitsui-Itochu Iron Pty Ltd, significantly increasing operations and market share. The low industry concentration level reflects both the diverse range of products supplied by industry firms and the scope available for small participants to service specific geographic markets, such as provincial centres or small towns. A large number of companies service niche markets and regions, while others have exclusive import and export contracts with foreign buyers and domestic companies. For more information, visit IBISWorld’s Metal and Mineral Wholesaling report in Australia industry page.

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IBISWorld industry Report Key Topics

This industry comprises firms that wholesale a range of mineral and metal products. Key items include coal and coke, pig iron, ingot steel and semi-fabricated products of iron or steel (sheet, strip, bars, rods, sections, structural steel or tubes). Firms may also wholesale metal waste or scrap.

Industry Performance
Executive Summary
Key External Drivers
Current Performance
Industry Outlook
Industry Life Cycle
Products & Markets
Supply Chain
Products & Services
Major Markets
International Trade
Business Locations
Competitive Landscape
Market Share Concentration
Key Success Factors
Cost Structure Benchmarks
Basis of Competition
Barriers to Entry
Industry Globalisation
Major Companies
Operating Conditions
Capital Intensity
Technology & Systems
Revenue Volatility
Regulation & Policy
Industry Assistance
Key Statistics
Industry Data
Annual Change
Key Ratios

About IBISWorld Inc.
Recognised as the nation’s most trusted independent source of industry and market research, IBISWorld offers a comprehensive database of unique information and analysis on every Australian industry. With an extensive online portfolio, valued for its depth and scope, the company equips clients with the insight necessary to make better business decisions. Headquartered in Melbourne, IBISWorld serves a range of business, professional service and government organisations through more than 10 locations worldwide. For more information, visit or call (03) 9655 3886.

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Gavin Smith
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