In one of the largest investments by a Chinese durable major in the country, Haier Appliances India will put in Rs 30.69 billion to set up its second industrial park in Greater Noida. On Friday, a memorandum of understanding was signed by the company and the Uttar Pradesh government.
The Greater Noida unit, spread over 123 acres, will be among the largest appliance plants in the country. Haier's component suppliers will set up base there. Samsung's largest mobile-manufacturing factory, inaugurated in June in Noida, is spread over 35 acres, involving an investment of Rs 49.15 billion.
The latest investment by Haier comes 10 months after the company upgraded its Ranjangaon industrial park in Pune at an investment of Rs 6 billion, taking its annual production of refrigerators to 1.8 million units (from 0.8 million units earlier). The Pune plant produces 0.5 million units each of washing machines, air conditioners, television sets, and water heaters.
“We were running out of capacity in the Pune unit and felt this was the right time to consider a second plant,” said Eric Braganza, president, Haier Appliances India. "The first phase of the Greater Noida unit will begin operations by 2020 at an investment of Rs 14 billion. The remaining Rs 16.69 billion will be invested in the second phase, which will be completed by 2022. By then, the plant will manufacture 2 million refrigerators, 1 million each of washing machines, air conditioners and television sets," he added.
Haier's manufacturing bet, which will provide jobs to 4,000 people directly and 10,000 people indirectly, comes as rivals such as Xiaomi and TCL (both Chinese brands) press the accelerator button in India. In April, Xiaomi, which has a presence in smartphones and TVs in the country, had invited over 50 of its global component suppliers to India, asking them to set up base in Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh, places where the Chinese major has its assembling units.
Manu Kumar Jain, Xiaomi's global vice-president and managing director of the firm's India arm, had said the move could see a potential investment of Rs 150 billion from the company's component suppliers, giving jobs to 50,000 people in the process.
TCL, which relaunched in India two years ago as an online-only brand (on Amazon), now sells over 100,000 units in the country and recently launched a smart TV, targeted specifically for the Indian market. This launch is expected to double sales of TCL TVs by the calendar year end, executives said. TCL has also begun making inroads into brick-and-mortar retail stores in the country in a bid to improve sales. The company is expected to set up a manufacturing base in the country.