Vancouver — According to a new report by iData Research, the Chinese and Indian retail and wholesale markets for hearing devices is valued at over $1 billion and will almost double in value by 2017. Hearing device companies that focus on customer education will benefit most.

iData says that growth in the Asia-Pacific markets will be driven by improved distribution by major foreign retail chains such as Amplifon, in a traditionally fragmented and underdeveloped industry. Hearing aid promotion and education from brand-name manufacturers are also driving adoption among the over 400 million hearing aid candidates in these countries, according to the report.

"Hearing aid penetration among those with hearing loss in China and India is only 1%," comments Douglas Fung, MD, analyst manager at iData, in the press statement. "Increased disposable incomes in these countries will drive these hearing aid markets to become two of the fastest growing in the world.”

Fung also noted that despite the growth, the penetration rate will progress only marginally by 2017 due to limited education among consumers and underdeveloped retail networks. “Companies that promote awareness will benefit the most from this lucrative industry,” Fung said.

The report states that, within India, major international hearing aid brands such as Widex and Beltone have opened retail locations. Retail-chain Amplifon has also positioned itself for growth by merging with National Hearing Care to gain market share.

As the purchasing power of retail chains grows in both India and China, prices are expected to decrease, driving unit sales to double in volume by 2017. iData predicts that Siemens, GN ReSound, Sonova, Starkey and Widex are the top manufacturers positioned to benefit from this growth.

iData is also offering a market report covering Australia, Japan, and South Korea that shows Japan making up the vast majority of the $2 billion potential sales.

To access the "Chinese and Indian Markets for Hearing Aids and Audiology Devices 2011" as well as other hearing market reports, register at

SOURCE: iData Research Inc