Ukrainians have adapted to the new realities. Demand and buying activity is more similar to the usual pre-war school season. Return of many children to their classrooms recreated a demand for office and school supplies, but now people are buying embroidered and leisure wear instead of school uniforms.
As compared to 2022, when the market was halved, today’s situation looks much better. First, some women and children have returned to Ukraine, and those who didn’t left their homeland have already got accustomed to the new realities. Parents have a more or less clear idea of today’s educational process, so they begin to prepare for it in advance.
New old realities
Serhii Dragunov, commercial director of the Minimum Price Territory, explained that the pre-war school season started in mid-July and ended in mid-September. After beginning of the war, the situation became completely different. People didn’t understand how their children would learn until the last moment, so they postponed school shopping for the last weeks before school, and the school season continued from mid-August to mid-September. “This year’s situation is relatively stable. Ukrainians have adapted to the new realities. Demand and buying activity are similar to the usual pre-war school season,” said Serhii. Other market participants note similar trends.
Basis purchase sum has increased by six times
The only thing we can’t return is the basis purchase sum. The largest Ukrainian online retailer Rozetka calculated the costs for school supplies and named the most popular products. In 2023, the basis purchase sum at Rozetka is 5,945 UAH. Compared with last year (990 UAH), it has increased by six times. The most expensive products are school backpacks (with average price of 1,663 UAH), boards and flip charts (1,256 UAH), and first-grader sets (687 UAH).
Patriotic and practical components of change in demand
According to Rozetka, as of August 2023, clothes (in particular, embroidered) and school supplies were in the greatest demand, and they were bought five times more often for girls. In addition, there was an increase in demand for outerwear sets, T-shirts, leisure suits, running shoes for boys; dresses, leisure suits and sneakers for girls. As for school and office supplies, Ukrainians actively buy diaries, folders, notebooks, color paper and cardboard kits, covers for notebooks and textbooks, sketchbooks, pencil cases, colored pencils, etc.
Regardless of the education format, every school, college and university student needs high-quality supplies: notebooks, backpack, tablet or laptop, chair and desk. LED lamps and chargers are useful during blackouts.
“The current season exceeds our expectations in all product categories (except the classic school uniform), especially in stationery, backpacks, and embroidered clothes. This motivates and inspires, because it shows that Ukraine is developing despite the difficult situation,” Serhii Dragunov shared his impressions.
This shows that consumers believe in Ukraine’s Army and have a positive attitude towards the future. Accordingly, retailers expect only positive trends this year.
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