Croma, the consumer durables’ chain owned by Tata Sons, has plans of entering the LCD (liquid crystal display) category next month. These will be Croma’s original products and compete in its own stores, alongside other industry majors like LG, Samsung, Videocon and Sony.
Croma started marketing of its exclusive branded products about two years earlier and has 43 outlets. It has planned to increase this to 75-80 outlets by the end of this financial year. The company is to not only increase the number of stores but also the number of exclusive products under its banner, starting with the LCD range of televisions.
It has planned to do this in a number of ways. It has, for instance, tied up with retail giant Woolworths (in December), which is now its official sourcing partner. This tie-up, the company said, had already helped it gain 25 per cent market share in the microwave segment. “We are setting up a supply chain and consolidating it for various products like LCDs and washing machines, to name a few. We plan to get LCDs, in particular, into the market by April and they will be sold at lower prices than the market price,” said Ajit Joshi, chief executive officer and managing director, Croma.
Croma also said sales of its private label accounted for 12 per cent of total sales, which included other brands. The company claims that Vu — a brand promoted by Croma — has raked in about five per cent of all LCD sales in the stores, and is looking at taking its share up to 20 per cent by the end of the financial year. “We plan to add innovation to the already existing brand of Vu and will promote it as a private Croma label by next month. We are already working with the company (Vu Technologies) to launch the same,” Joshi added.