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Philips to pump surplus cash into acquisitions

BS Reporters  |  Kolkata 

Meanwhile, the company is scouting for local partners to launch economical range of products across its lighting, lifestyle and healthcare segments.

The aim is to make tailor products according to the requirements of various emerging markets. An example is the smokeless chulah. There is a need for a centre of excellence within each country, which will connect the brand proposition to end consumers, pointed out Dutta.Murali Sivaraman, vice-chairman and managing director, Philips India, said, "We want to enter the affordable category.

We are already present in the premium category for healthcare and lighting products. But we want to bring down the costs of X-rays, CT scanning and patient monitoring systems. We will, therefore, look at partnering with a few local to make more economical equipment that would cost less than what it is right now."The company will also put thrust on its LED range of lamps. LEDs have longer life and are more energy efficient than CFL lamps.

"But the only reason why the market for LEDs in India is small is because of its higher prices. So we are working on a technology to bring the costs of LEDs down," Sivaraman said.

Philips is also looking at new product areas, where it will create customised products and introduce global product lines into the country, Sivaraman said, without divulging details.

The company has posted a profit after tax of Rs190.3 crore for the year ended December 31,2007, down 10.66 per cent, while its net sales grew by 9 per cent to Rs 2,845.5 crore for the period. Last year's margins were boosted by the addition of an exceptional item on grounds of selling of one of the company's semiconductor units, said Sivaraman, while accounting for the dip in profit.

Philips India's gross income for the year was Rs 2,936.3 crore from Rs 2,673.5 crore, while its operating profit had improved by 65 per cent to Rs 245.6 crore during the year.

First Published: Sun, June 15 2008. 00:00 IST