Woodwind.OrgThe Clarinet BBoardThe C4 standard

 
  BBoard Equipment Study Resources Music General    
 
 New Topic  |  Go to Top  |  Go to Topic  |  Search  |  Help/Rules  |  Smileys/Notes  |  Log In   Newer Topic  |  Older Topic 
 Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-13 20:19

I did not attend ClarinetFest 2023, but I skimmed the program online, and came across this tidbit in Buffet's self-description (p. 215): "Established in 1825, Buffet Crampon is the acknowledged world leader in clarinet manufacture, accounting for roughly 85% of all professional clarinet sales globally."

I was astounded by this claim. Of course, I expected Buffet to be the market share leader, and perhaps to hold more than 50 percent of the market, but 85 percent globally is in Google search share territory. That would qualify as a monopoly under most relevant legal standards.

There is some ambiguity in the statement that needs to be acknowledged. I assume that the reference is to ANNUAL sales, because if not, the claim would be meaningless. An old company like Buffet could simply choose any time period it wanted in order to proclaim itself the cumulative leader. So it must be talking about clarinets sold per year.

Also, what's a "professional clarinet" as used here? Is that determined by model or price level? And is the category limited to Bb/A, or does it also include Eb, alto, and bass?

But despite the vagueness, we're still looking at an incredible number. Selmer Paris, Yamaha, Backun, Uebel, Patricola, Rossi, various German system makers -- all these add up to only 15% of the pro market? Is any objective data available on this point?



Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-07-13 21:52

My understanding of the term "professional clarinet" to mean just that - a professional level clarinet as opposed to a student level clarinet and that means all the different pitch clarinets in either category.

Therefore a "professional clarinet" is any clarinet of any pitch designed and made for professional level performance which in Buffet's case is all their models from the R13 and RC upwards which they've clearly labelled right there on their own site:

https://www.buffet-crampon.com/en/instruments/clarinets/

Chris.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-13 23:23

I don't doubt that Buffet can decide which of its own clarinet models qualify as "professional." Less certain is how it applies that term to other companies' products. Market definition issues are always subject to potential manipulation, depending on the desired conclusion. You can draw the line in different places to make the relevant market larger or smaller.

But this is a side issue. The core question is the validity of the 85 percent market share claim. Does that seem realistic? Can it be independently verified (i.e., from a source other than Buffet)? This kind of data often seems to be unavailable without purchasing an expensive market analysis report.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2023-07-14 00:13

Somehow I don't seem to have a problem with that number.



Back in the day there were really only TWO clarinet makers if you were serious about the instrument, Buffet and Selmer. Selmer was considered the "jazz" clarinet. When big bands went away for good, that left Buffet to pretty much control the market. Other contenders were always around but never got the huge market share that Selmer and Buffet achieved over time.


A friend once said, "We live in a Buffet world," and I don't have any reason to doubt that. I'd say just go up to the players in your local orchestra or show pit and ask them what they play. There are some notable exceptions, but for the most part you'll hear that the answer is Buffet.



................Paul Aviles



Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: arthurpalves 
Date:   2023-07-14 01:08
Attachment:  IMG_4969.jpeg (641k)

Things didn’t really change since 1949

--
I just try to play jazz with friends

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2023-07-14 02:05

no love for leblanc ? fro the 50,s -90s they were a major maker

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2023-07-14 02:47

No


and if you heard Marcellus speak of how he tormented them with their endorsement offers you'd know how little love there was





.............Paul Aviles



Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2023-07-14 05:50

i love my 1960,s leblanc LL more than my r13

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-14 06:33

Paul Aviles wrote:

> Somehow I don't seem to have a problem with that number.
. . .
> A friend once said, "We live in a Buffet world," and I don't
> have any reason to doubt that. I'd say just go up to the
> players in your local orchestra or show pit and ask them what
> they play. There are some notable exceptions, but for the most
> part you'll hear that the answer is Buffet.

If someone had told me, "Buffet actually sells more pro clarinets than all other makes combined," I would have been very impressed, but not stupefied. 51 percent of a market, or more, is serious domination. But saying that Buffet sells almost SIX TIMES as many pro clarinets as all other brands combined is just jaw-dropping. That kind of market share is really, really hard to achieve, especially with an artisanal product that doesn't involve true network effects and therefore has little tendency toward a "natural monopoly."

As someone who plays saxophone as well, I would bet my house that no saxophone maker comes anywhere close to this kind of total control of its market. In fact, I doubt that this type of monopoly exists in the market for any other major musical instrument in the contemporary world.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-14 08:47

I agree, super20dan! The L200 was an amazing instrument. I owned two of them. Lent one to a friend, then the friend moved, so I lost my backup. Then I switch to vintage Alberts and no longer play the L200 I have, but I'm too attached to let it go.

Funny that Buffet's claim has basically been the same all these years. I wonder if it is like the small town business which was voted "best business of..." back in 1970 and still boasts that it was voted best business of the town.

It would be fun to know how they get the number. Do they scan all the major orchestras at one given time, and find out what the clarinetists are playing on...then if the numbers show poorly, they change the criteria of which groups to poll, and try again?

Fuzzy
;^)>>>



Post Edited (2023-07-14 08:49)

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Michael E. Shultz 
Date:   2023-07-14 15:19

Speaking of saxophones, the Selmer Mark VI was The Saxophone back in its day. Sigurd Rascher was criticized because he did not play a "modern saxophone" (a Selmer Mark VI). I was told by a music professor back in the fall of 1974 that I should have bought a Selmer Mark VI instead of the Couf I owned. What neither the professor nor I knew at the time was that the Mark VI had been discontinued in favor the the widely disliked Mark VII. I'm not sure there is one preferred saxophone make now.

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."
Groucho Marx

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2023-07-14 16:17

Agreed, the Buffet historical reference makes it look fishy. There are no laws preventing the stretching of truth (or outright lying) unless it is to a Federal Grand Jury.


For the record I currently play a Leblanc OpusII and have sold two R13s within about a year of purchase.


That said, I try to be a realist and consider the market objectively. When your goal is to be a professional classical player and your expensive private instructor at your very expensive private school tells you to buy an R13, you would be a little less inclined to arbitrarily pick something else.


just sayin’



……….Paul Aviles



Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: J. J. 
Date:   2023-07-14 17:18

My reaction to this: welcome to the clarinet world. 85% might not be the exact number… but it seems about right. It’s places like this BBoard where the perception is skewed.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-14 18:09

Even if it were true, it wouldn't mean very much. McDonald's probably has 85 per cent of the fast food market. That doesn't make eating there a wonderful gourmet dining experience.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-14 18:49

ruben wrote:

> Even if it were true, it wouldn't mean very much. McDonald's
> probably has 85 per cent of the fast food market.

This is why I've tried to point out how extreme Buffet's claim is. People may have a tendency to think, "Oh well, other big companies probably have equally big market shares." They don't -- unless it's some kind of networked tech product or service that tends toward a natural monopoly.

According to what I was able to quickly pull up online, McDonald's share of the U.S. fast food market is 43.8 percent. See https://www.zippia.com/advice/largest-fast-food-chains/ That's about half of what Buffet is claiming, and the McDonald's figure is U.S. only; it's going to be considerably lower on a worldwide basis. McDonald's is an international chain, but it doesn't enjoy the same degree of market domination in every country that it does in the United States, its home turf. In contrast, Buffet's claimed 85 percent market share explicitly purports to apply globally. That's incredible.



Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-14 19:00

Fuzzy wrote:

> Funny that Buffet's claim has basically been the same all these
> years. I wonder if it is like the small town business which
> was voted "best business of..." back in 1970 and still boasts
> that it was voted best business of the town.

Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia, and Buffet has always had an 85 percent global market share. :)

> It would be fun to know how they get the number. Do they scan
> all the major orchestras at one given time, and find out what
> the clarinetists are playing on...then if the numbers show
> poorly, they change the criteria of which groups to poll, and
> try again?

Since lots of people who are not in major orchestras also buy professional clarinets (students, amateurs, and pros who haven't earned a chair), the only reliable method would be to compare sales data for all identified professional models. The question is whether Buffet has access to such data from its competitors. I don't know the answer to that question.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Hunter_100 
Date:   2023-07-14 19:44

They don't need specific data from competitors. All they need is total clarinet sales numbers from a few of the major online retailers to figure out market share. Buffet would know how many buffet instruments are going to those retailers from their internal sales data, so it would be easy to work out their market share. The percentages sold at major online retailers would probably match the global ratios well.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: lmliberson 
Date:   2023-07-14 19:53

This is important?

Honestly...who really cares?

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: LostConn 
Date:   2023-07-14 20:28

lmliberson wrote:

> This is important?
>
> Honestly...who really cares?

I care, which is why I started the thread. The business side of the clarinet world is interesting. However, I have noted your disapprobation, and will be sure to accord it due weight in my future posting decisions.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-15 13:43

Lost Conn: I used to work for a one-man artisanal maker of clarinets. He has trouble selling them because nobody has heard of them (JL Clarinettes-France). Even when people are very impressed by them, they won't take the risk of buying something other than Buffet. They actually explicitly exress this concern. Bassoonists seem to be more open-minded than clarinetists. There are all sorts of bassoon manufacturing concerns out there. Not just Heckel. PS: Don't be discouraged by negative comments about your post: we all get them! I find it an interesting topic. If a topic interests you, it is bound to interest other people out there.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2023-07-15 16:26

its called the buffet mafia for a reason

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Remarkable Buffet market share claim
Author: Hugues Fardao 
Date:   2023-07-16 02:17

In October 2021, I was in a Clarinet Day in Rouen conservatory (France). There were all the Selmer and Buffet Crampon actual models for free testing and compare.

Between two master classes, all the young students rushed from the concert hall ans and tested the Buffet clarinets. We were maybe two or three adults on the Selmer stand. That says many things.

Reply To Message
 Avail. Forums  |  Threaded View   Newer Topic  |  Older Topic 


 Avail. Forums  |  Need a Login? Register Here 
 User Login
 User Name:
 Password:
 Remember my login:
   
 Forgot Your Password?
Enter your email address or user name below and a new password will be sent to the email address associated with your profile.
Search Woodwind.Org

Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale

The Clarinet Pages
For Sale
Put your ads for items you'd like to sell here. Free! Please, no more than two at a time - ads removed after two weeks.

 
     Copyright © Woodwind.Org, Inc. All Rights Reserved    Privacy Policy    Contact charette@woodwind.org