Industry Statistics

The UK water cooler market consists of both bottled water coolers and mains fed plumbed-in (POU) coolers which dispense filtered chilled mains tap water.

Water Cooler Market data highlights for 2018 (Source: Zenith Global)

  • 2018 saw the sixth successive year of growth for the UK water cooler market
  • The total UK water cooler market was worth £127 million in 2018 compared with £120 million the previous year – over 5% y.o.y. growth
  • Market size in 2018 was 678,000 water cooler units compared with 663,000 at the end of 2017, an increase of 2.2%
  • Both bottled water coolers and POU (mains-fed) coolers have increased in numbers in the past year, but the POU segment accounted for the major increase in units rented

The market split between the two types of coolers has been relatively stable since 2012 and continued to remain so in 2018. Bottled water coolers accounted for 52% of the market and POU coolers accounted for the remaining 48%. By contrast, 10 years ago in 2009, POU accounted for 40% of total units. It wasn’t until the financial recession abated in 2011 that the bottled water cooler segment picked up.

In terms of units installed, the number of bottled water coolers increased by 1.5% to 354,700 units, whilst POU coolers increased by 3.0% to 323,300 units.

Volume sales of bottled water showed a 4% rise to 326 million litres.

  • Zenith Global forecasts that by 2023 there will be 742,300 installed units.
  • Acquisition activity will continue to be significant in the industry.
  • Product portfolio expansion and greater interest in a wider range of products is likely, including hot water boilers and under-sink machines.

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