HLL is beefing up vending operations for its ice cream brand Kwality Walls to perk up sales. The company has set a sales growth target of 30% through trikes and carts, much higher than the past two years' growth of 16% and 22%, respectively. Vending accounts for nearly 75% of sales for Kwality Walls.
The company is undertaking a pilot, Project Star Vending, in Delhi and NCR to increase throughput per trike. The aim is to gain share - not only from the competition, but also from parallel categories such as chips and cold drinks.
Depending on the success, the project would be replicated across other markets. Kwality Walls aims to get consumers through what it calls multi-sensoriality or heightened visibility for its trikes and vendors, convert it to purchases and then retain them through basic hygiene and service excellence.
As a part of complete new visibility template, the company is creating new glow sign, price boards and point-of-sale material. “There will be emphasis on the right positioning of the trikes and vendors,” a company official told ET.
Vendor visibility will be heightened through a complete makeover. “While there will be a focus on behavioural changes amongst those manning carts and trikes, vendors will be encouraged to be prim and proper in appearance,” the official added. The consumer service paradigm will also focus on entire range availability, sorting and handling, apart from the manner in which vendors interact with the consumers.
HLL has roped in Indian Retail School to help it generate teaching aids such as audio visual, posters, manual and other reinforcements, including games and role plays. The company plans to train 200 vendors in the first phase. It will be followed by 300 in the next.
Kwality Walls had a good last year with 11% topline growth and a positive bottomline for the first time. The company wants to consolidate these early gains. It had announced an expansion plan for its Rs 100-crore brand Kwality Walls earlier this year.
This is a part of HLL's strategy to focus on the ice cream business in urban market, which has seen fresh competition emerging last year. As many as eight new rival brands were launched in 2005.
While HLL reacted with a whopping spike in ad spend last year, it has added 15 more Kwality Swirls outlets at select malls across the country this year. It would now set up more parlours and scooping stations depending upon the availability of malls with sufficient throughputs.