Japan was placed at the top of world piano exports in 2021, with foreign sales of 373 million dollars, a record.
The amount represents a year-on-year growth of 23.1% and an increase of 11.7% over 2019.
According to the Shigeru Kawai company, the sector was affected by the decrease in piano sales as a result of the exit restrictions of the governments of each country and the closing orders of musical instrument stores, but due to the deregulation and changes in lifestyles, the sales trend has been recovering since the second quarter of 2021.
Sales of digital pianos and hybrid pianos remained strong in various parts of the world in the context of “nesting” demand.
Sales of the “CA series”, which is the highest-end model that reproduces the comfort of playing a grand piano, and the “NV series”, which is a hybrid piano model equipped with acoustic piano action, were particularly strong.
On the other hand, although music classes and physical education classes at home are on a recovery trend, the cancellation measures in the first quarter had an important impact.
Shigeru Kawai pianos are a blend of traditional craftsmanship, technical innovations, and state-of-the-art materials.
Other relevant exporters of pianos in the world are Germany, Indonesia, China and the United States.
Global foreign sales have fluctuated around 800 million dollars annually.
In particular, Japanese exports of these products go mainly to countries such as China, the United States, Germany, Australia and Vietnam.
All of these shipments include pianos, including automatics; harpsichords and other keyboard stringed instruments.
According to the specialist Piano Buyer site, Japan’s two major piano manufacturers, Yamaha and Kawai, began making pianos around 1900 and 1927, respectively, with export to the United States beginning in earnest in the early 1960s.
As in Korea, labor costs in Japan have risen to the point where both companies have been forced to move much of their manufacturing elsewhere, building only their most expensive models in Japan.