As part of its growth and development strategy, home appliances company Electrolux Kelvinator Ltd plans to open exclusive retail outlets which will also act as experience centres, as well as introduce and nurture new product categories in the Indian market.
By the end of 2005, the company hopes to have put in place 50 exclusive stores, christened Electrolux Homes, through franchisees.
These outlets will display the complete product portfolio of the company, said its Vice-President (Sales & Marketing) Mr Ajay Kapila.
He said the company, with accumulated losses of over Rs 500 crore, is looking at newer product categories for growth. Expanding its product portfolio is key to the realisation of its full potential in the country, he added.
While Electrolux has launched its brand of air-conditioners and microwave ovens, it's also planning to introduce kitchen appliances like hobs, hoods and electric chimneys and vacuum cleaners.
In the air-conditioner and microwave markets, Electrolux hopes to attain a 10 per cent market share in the second year itself.
Mr Kapila said the company hopes to find a niche for itself in the crowded air-conditioner market by providing split-ACs cheaper.
Electrolux is offering its 0.75 tonne Oxigen split-AC at an exchange price of Rs 12,990 and is also coming out with a 1 tonne version, which will be priced at Rs 16,990.
Among its innovations in the refrigerator category is `Bijlee,' which offers a 12-hour power backup through a built-in battery. "The product is unique; the concept will have to be sold to the customer," he said. The company has identified five critical markets where the power situation is precarious, and will target them with Bijlee. Some of such markets will be in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, he said.
Electrolux is also promoting its `Tamanna' refrigerators, which come with in-built FM radios and message recorders, among home-makers.
The company is now looking for significant business growth through its new product offerings as well as through its distribution initiatives to reach new markets, said Mr Kapila.