GE India says not focusing on 2010 sales target

GE India says not focusing on 2010 sales target

Bangalore: General Electric Co is not focusing on its $8 billion sales target for India in 2010, but is confident about long-term opportunities, the chief executive of its India arm said on Friday.

“We are not focusing on $8 billion," T.P. Chopra, who is also the president of GE India, said on the sidelines of an event to launch new products by its healthcare unit in Bangalore.

“That was a target, an aspirational target, we had set out two, three years ago," he said.

GE had said in 2006 it aimed to achieve $8 billion in revenue from Asia’s third-largest economy in 2010, up from about $1 billion in 2005, as a rapidly expanding economy boosted demand for infrastructure and healthcare.

Large scale investments on infrastructure has slowed as the country’s economic growth is expected to falter sharply for the second year running after expanding at a blistering pace of 9% or more in the previous three fiscal years.

The Fairfield, Connecticut-based company, whose businesses range from water purification technology to jet engines to NBC Universal entertainment, counts India among one of its key emerging markets.

Last month, the largest US conglomerate posted a 36% drop in net income and warned of some signs that the economy may be continuing to deteriorate.

Chopra said GE, which installed India’s first hydropower plant in 1902, remained confident about growth opportunities in India in the medium to long term on the growing investments on infrastructure and healthcare.

“In the short-term, okay it is going to be difficult as the market stabilises and things like that. (In the) medium to long term, I remain confident," he said. “The country needs infrastructure."

India has said it needs about $500 billion to repair its creaky infrastructure such as ports, roads and power units.