Kodak, as a TV brand, is looking to add more retailers, distributors and dealers to achieve its aim of penetrating 18,000 pin codes in the country
Avneet Singh Marwah, Director and CEO, Super Plastronics, a Kodak brand Licensee, in an exclusive conversation with EFY, shed light on the importance of sales channel for a consumer electronics brand. He believes that the growth of a TV brand is closely associated with the growth of retailers, distributors and dealers in its network.
He said Super Plastronic’s manufacturing plants, located in three different parts, can easily cater to TV demands from all over India. Additionally, the brand is also plaining to set-up more plants in the country. It is also looking to add more retailers, distributors and dealers to achieve its aim of penetrating 18,000 pin codes in the country.
Here are some other interesting excerpts from the conversation
Que – How are Kodak HD LED TVs different from TVs offered by other brands in the country? What are your targets in terms of market share for the current and upcoming financial year?
Only a handful of brands were capturing the major TV market share in India for last two decades. Many of these were ridiculously priced and that was when we decided to launch Kodak in 2016 in the affordable TVs category. I must say that we have never looked back since then.
Our motto “We offer the same technology, but at a better price” has really worked for us. The Indian consumers are smart. They compare specifications before buying televisions. If you notice, you will find that affordable category brands are doing well and taking over the market share. Currently our market share is 3% and we target about 5% by the end of 2020.
Que – Do you think that the India TV market has already reached saturation levels?
Super Plastronics is a 30 years old company. We started with CRT televisions; we have the infrastructure across India with 28 warehouses, 350 service centers. We had a couple of Indians brands with us and thought that it was time we have a multinational brand on board, and nothing better than Kodak came up. Kodak, as a brand has a legacy of 125 years.
I don’t personally think India TV market has reached its saturation point as there are more than 118 million CRT sets across India. There’s a long way to go as the market has just started showing its true potential.
The current market share for smart TVs is 65 per cent and in the next three and is expected to be 90 to 95 per cent. The replacement market for smart TV and 4k is also big. By 2022, 60 per cent of TVs will be 4K in US, and I think that trend will soon follow in India as well, so there is still plenty of time till it reaches its saturation point.
Que – Are you planning to use your existing network of retailers, dealers and re-sellers in the country? What parameters do you look for before adding a new retailer, dealer and re-seller in your network? Will you be adding more re-sellers, dealers in your network?
Yes, that was the criteria behind it. We had to use our existing network and we did just that. We started online and moved towards the offline market. We now exist in some of the biggest large format retail stores including the likes of Metro Cash and Carry, More: Aditya Birla Retail Limited and CROMA.
We will keep adding on dealers, distributors and retailers in our network because that is how we grow. Our aim is to have at least 35,000 billing centers in India.
Que – A brand’s success largely depends on its service network, what’s your strategy regarding the same? What service model are you planning to follow in India?
We have 350 company owned service centers and a tie-up with 220 service centers across India. We call it shield one and shield two. Kodak promises an SLA time of 24 hours for installation in tier 1 cities, while 48 hours for tier 2 and 72 hours for all other areas. Our sales network and users know that we are quickest door to door service brand in the country.
Que – Which Indian regions are you strongest in? Which are the ones that you will be focusing on during the next expansion phase?
Currently the strongest region is Karnataka and northern states. We will now be focusing more on Andhra and Telgnana followed by Tamil Nadu Maharashtra and east. We are actively looking to add more people in our sales network in these areas.
Que – Where are you expecting major sales from – online or offline sales channels? What are your strategies for these channels?
Our major share of sales come from online channel as we had started our operations through online channels only. Our strategy is to cover both online and offline sales. Our strategic partner is Flipkart followed by Amazon.
We aim to penetrate 18000 pin codes in the next three years and we will be adding more retailers, dealers and distributors to achieve our aim.
Que – Will we see Kodak entering more consumer electronics verticals in the future? Which all countries will you be targeting?
Kodak started in Europe, America, and South America, Canada. You will soon see it in Africa. Our target markets currently are Asia pacific and Middle East.
Yes, we are entering into different verticals. Kodak will soon be launching washing machines and other appliances.
Que – Tell us about your plans for manufacturing TVs in India? Where can we see next TV factory coming up in India? Will you be investing more on manufacturing TVs in India? Where do you source major components from?
We have three plants in India. One is in Jammu, one in Himachal, and one main plant in Noida. Our target is to capture eight to none per cent of TV market share by 2022. We have everything in house.
Raw materials are sourced from different countries and manufacturing and assembling is done in-house. We have invested close to 150crs in a new automatic line that will soon be launched in March and will help add up the quantity. Next year we will be opening one more plants in India. We source panels from Samsung through different countries including Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam and Indonesia.