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The Ali Group is one of the leading players in the global foodservice equipment market.The Ali Group is one of the leading players in the global foodservice equipment market.

Recent research by Transparency Market Research details that the major driver for the global foodservice equipment and commercial refrigeration market is the increasing presence of the hospitality industry. With the growing availability of urban infrastructure in developed regions and the rising disposable income of consumers, the hospitality industry is experiencing steady growth all over the world.

The report, entitled “Food Service Equipment (Commercial Refrigeration) Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast 2014-2020” cites the increasingly hectic lifestyle of urban consumers as also forcing them to eat out regularly, which is another factor driving the demand for commercial refrigeration services.

According to TMR’s lead analyst: “The advancement in refrigeration technologies over the last few years has also helped the global commercial refrigeration market immensely.” The cost-effectiveness of foodservice equipment has become increasingly important for the hospitality industry due to its direct impact on an operator’s profit margins, driving the demand for advanced commercial refrigeration products.

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However, the prohibitively high capital investment required to install top-notch foodservice equipment has restrained the growth of the global market. While large international players can afford to install advanced commercial refrigeration services, new players have to make do with older technology. This is a key restraint on the global foodservice equipment market, but is likely to be ameliorated over the forecast period.

The major players in the global foodservice equipment market, according to Transparency Market Research, are Meiko, Ali Group, Fujimak Corporation, Hobart Corporation, Hoshizaki Electric Co Ltd, Manitowoc Company Inc (now known as Welbilt), Rational AG, Dover Corporation, Libbey Inc, Electrolux AB, Vollrath Co, Tupperware Brands Corporation, Duke Manufacturing Co Inc, Cambro Manufacturing Company Inc, Middleby Corporation, Alto Shaam Inc, and Dispensing Dynamics International Inc.

By product type, walk-in refrigerators are said to have held the largest share in the revenue of the global foodservice equipment market in 2014. Walk-ins are preferred by vendors due to the higher convenience they provide to customers, and accounted for close to 1m commercial refrigeration units in 2013. Even though walk-ins are expected to remain the leading segment of the global commercial refrigeration equipment market till 2020, the beverage dispensers segment is likely to exhibit the highest growth rate of all product segments. Other major product types in the global commercial refrigeration market include ice machines, glass door merchandisers, refrigerated vending machines, commercial fridges/freezers, ice cream cabinets and blast freezers.

Regionally, North America was the largest market for foodservice equipment in 2013. The early establishment of the market in North America is a major driver for the regional market. North America’s position as the premier technological hub has also helped keep the regional commercial refrigeration industry at the cutting edge of technological innovation.

Therefore if UK-based catering equipment suppliers want to make the most of favourable export conditions, they might want to look at expanding into the North American market – as long as they can differentiate themselves from the crowded marketplace.

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