The sales of Valentine’s Day gifts will not exceed EGP 20 million, indicating that this represents only 20% of the sales volume in previous years, said Barakat Safa, deputy head of the stationery division of the Cairo Chamber of Commerce.
He attributed the drop in sales to several reasons, including the weakness of the purchasing power and the tendency toward purchasing the necessary goods.
Also, the suspension of studies in universities and schools caused sales disruption even further, as youth are among the biggest consumers of Valentine’s gifts.
Regarding the effect of e-commerce “online sales”, he pointed out that it not only affected the sales of Valentine’s gifts in traditional stores but, also affected the sales of all goods such as electrical appliances, clothes, toys, accessories, and even cakes.
He explained that e-commerce has become popular and accounts for at least 40% of the volume of market sales, adding that customers no longer prefer to search for their needs in the markets, as well as fear of crowding in light of the pandemic.
Safa pointed out that wholesalers were preparing for the Valentine’s season two months before its initial launch, but in light of the precautionary measures, the selling season began only 48 hours ago, as stores began to display their products for the season.
He stressed the stability of the prices of Valentine’s gifts despite the high shipping prices and foreign currencies, pointing out that the prices start from EGP 30, according to the size and type of the gift.
The deputy head noted that the most common gifts for valentine’s are teddy bears, hearts and dolls, as well as roses. Other customers prefer to buy gift boxes, musical instruments, watches and accessories.
According to the figures, the import of gifts and toys decreased significantly during the year 2020, to nearly record in the range of $60-62 million, compared to $85-88 million year-on-year.