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Appliances, consumer electronics cos look forward to regain in 2021

Lost around 25% of annual sales in the Covid-19-hit 2020

Appliances, consumer electronics cos look forward to regain in 2021
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Appliances, consumer electronics cos look forward to regain in 2021

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New Delhi: The appliances and consumer electronics industry, which lost around 25 per cent of annual sales in the Covid-19-hit 2020, expects to regain the lost ground next year through a special focus on digital initiatives, emerging trends, change in consumer behaviour as well as the impetus to ramp up domestic manufacturing activities. From Work From Home (WFH) and Do It Yourself (DIY), 2020 has been unique with many challenges and possibilities for the industry. Leading brands witnessed rapid increase in digital consumption, changes in demands where more consumers are seeking value propositions with a comfortable, convenient, and connected experience to support a changed lifestyle amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Helped by high double-digit growth in festive season sales - where consumers purchased larger screen TVs, bigger refrigerators and washing machines to manage changing lifestyles under WFH and DIY trends - the industry expects the second half of the current fiscal ending March 31, 2021 to be better. Companies will continue to introduce products based on new technologies to establish themselves even more firmly in the segment by tapping the emerging demand for automation and digitisation, expanding presence in the digital medium with a special focus on omni-channels as well as semi-urban and rural markets.

According to Sony India, 2020 was an "unprecedented year". However, in the past few months, it has witnessed a "sharp tendency shift" towards established brands and customers are now prioritising overall value proposition rather than just price. "Overall, we see ourselves as a stronger brand in 2021 with Sony launching technologically advanced products and nicely meeting the demand from our customers," Sony India Managing Director Sunil Nayyar said. Samsung India, whose electronics business saw strong double-digit growth in the second half over last year, witnessed some very interesting trends among consumers who wanted to buy larger screen TVs, bigger refrigerators and washing machines to help them manage their changing lifestyles.

Moreover, to promote domestic manufacturing in the segment, the government re-imposed customs duty on import of open-cell for TVs from October this year. It had also put restrictions on imports of finished air conditioners. LG Electronics India is expecting a 50 per growth in the premium segments of home appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines. It also had a "huge spike" in demand for other products like microwave and dishwashers, and is investing to create multiple contents engaging the customers, LG Electronics India VP of Home Appliances Vijay Babu said.

Terming the move of PLI as a "game-changer", the country's largest contact manufacturer Dixon said it will help to create a world-class manufacturing base for the consumer electronics and appliances segment. "PLI announcement for the sector is a game-changer for the Indian industry. Now, we can be a global champion in manufacturing. It has laid a strong foundation for the years to come and will help to make India as the global hub for manufacturing for the sector," Dixon Technologies Chairman Sunil Vachani said.

Kumar Rahul
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