Consumer durable makers like Sony, LG, Panasonic and Whirlpool are expecting up to 35 per cent growth in the upcoming festive season and are pulling out all stops as the sector eyes a rebound from a prolonged slump.
To attract buyers, durable makers are offering freebies like hard disk drive, DVD players, carrying case and accessories. Discounts, cash back and extended warranty schemes are also being employed to boost festive demand.
Sony, which is expecting sales of Rs 5,100 crore during the August to November period, has earmarked Rs 250 crore for its marketing budget push sales.
"Coupled with the boost in the customer sentiment, we are expecting to close the festive season with sales of Rs 5,100 crore with a growth of 25 per cent over corresponding period last year," Sony India, Head Sales, Sunil Nayyar told PTI.
South Korean maker LG is expecting 35 per cent jump in sales during the festive sales due to positive sentiments.
"We are witnessing boost in consumers' confidence on hope of an economic recovery. Consumer sentiment is picking up and we are very upbeat," said LG India, VP Sales, Sanjeev Agarwal.
Industry officials also feel that the new government has ushered in a sense of greater stability in consumers.
Panasonic India, Managing Director, Manish Sharma said: "We believe that the new government has resulted in a higher consumer confidence and stable rupee, which will definitely lead to an upsurge in sales this season".
Panasonic, which is expecting 25 per cent growth in sales as compared to the same period last year, is spending Rs 85 crore for the marketing initiatives and has run special
campaign during the festive season on its Viera range of TV, microwaves, refrigerators and washing Machines.
However, Whirlpool of India Vice-President Corporate Affairs and strategy Asia South Shantanu Dasgupta says there is optimism in consumer sentiment but it would not be as good as 2009 and 2010, when industry had posted 30-40 per cent growth.
"We see a certain sense of optimism in consumer sentiment. The reality, however, is that cost of living has gone up, food inflation is high, and interest rates have not come down," he said.
Whirlpool is expecting 20 per cent growth in volumes during September to November and would spend Rs 12 crore on media campaigns.
"We will be launching a television campaign specially created for Diwali. We will also support the promotion in print, radio and digital," Dasgupta said.
Companies are also adding new products in their line up before the onset of the festive period and offering interesting mix of promotional offers on their flagship products.
"This festive season, we would be aggressively targeting our customers with a thrilling line-up, adding joy to the celebrations," said Nayyar, adding that Sony is introducing
promotional offers on Bravia TVs and Alpha range of cameras and is also offering assured gifts.
Whirlpool would introduce a new washing machine and a range of high-end microwaves in its Indian product line up, imported from its European factory.
Meanwhile, LG is offering sound bar, DVD player with selected high end televisions and 'magic motion' remote with selected smart TV models.
"The festive season is the most important season for LG. With the objective of maximising customer satisfaction and considering the changing lifestyle and robust economic growth, LG is offering exciting offers," said Agarwal.
LG is launching its first ever 360 degree brand campaign highlighting its product portfolio, he added.
Panasonic has unveiled a 'My Celebrations, My Choices' during the festival seasons and is offering special offers.
"The campaign has been created keeping in mind the flavour and zest of the Indian festive season. Under this campaign, consumers can avail special offers on the purchase of Viera, Microwaves, Refrigerators and Washing Machines," said Sharma.
Sony would be running special campaigns, including ATL and BTL activities such as print, outdoor, shop-front and events, in order to push sales.
"For the festive season this year, we have a dedicated marketing budget of Rs 250 crore and we are confident that it would help us in achieving a strong response to our festive promotional offers," said Nayyar.