Whirlpool to expand AC, built-in kitchen appliances portfolio
New Delhi: Home appliances maker Whirlpool of India Ltd, which is aiming to double sales in the next four years, expects non-core segments like air conditioners (ACs) and built-in kitchen appliances to contribute to 20% of total sales by then.
Besides, Whirlpool is also investing about Rs140 crore in the next two years in its existing plants to expand production capacity and manufacture new products. Whirlpool, which presently exports to neighbouring South Asia and South-east Asian countries besides parts of Australia, would increase its contribution as it is scouting for more geographies. “We are looking to double our turnover in next four years. We are increasing the contribution from business from the non-core which is non-washing machine and refrigerators, by growing into other categories,” Whirlpool of India managing director Sunil D’Souza said. He further added, “We are aiming to move from current 10% to 20%.”
The company posted Rs3,488 crore net sales in FY16. “We have set an objective of growing the base business, which is washing machines and refrigerators, and set a target of expanding our portfolio and growing beyond that. So, we are focusing on ACs, water and cooking led by our built-in business,” D’Souza added.
Presently, Whirlpool of India is operating plants at Faridabad, Pune and Puducherry, and manufactures up to 90% of the domestic needs. “We had spent Rs75 crore capex in 2015-16. In the current financial year, we plan to take this number up by 25%. For the next financial year 2017-18, we intend to increase our capex further by 50% over 2016-17 base,” D’Souza said. He further added, “We have now specific plans at some of our plants. We would make sure that we would utilize them to the maximum and invest going forward. This would be for the base capacity and also focusing on new product launches.”
On exports, he said that the company is looking for new geographies, and its contribution would increase in the coming years. “Currently exports are about 5-6% of our business, but we aim to grow that significantly as we go ahead,” he said.
Primarily, Whirlpool exports refrigerators and washing machines from India. “We have export markets across Asia and Africa, prominent being South-east Asia, Australia and this year particularly, the new market of Morocco. We aim to continue to leverage our strong brand, differentiated products , great quality, competitive pricing and global networks to continue to increase exports,” he said.