The leading water purifier company Kent RO has recently launched its first experience centre in DLF Mall of India, Noida. We spoke to Mahesh Gupta, Chairman of Kent RO Systems Ltd about their newly launched plan.
What is your motive behind the concept of Experience stores?
We have come out and launched many appliances that are innovative in nature like smart chef cooking appliances. Now these products are not stopped by the Normal retailers. They will like to give you samples because they can’t keep all the product range with themselves. They may display you around 20 items there. So we thought let’s have such experience centres in such a location where people can come and experience the products physically and understand the products as well.
How much investment per store you are planning to put in expanding your experience?
They will come in the rented premises or to franchise model. At the moment we have rented on the company and have put all the investment. At that time our investment would be 20 lakhs per stores. And some would come where the franchisee would invest equally and we will only supplying the products for sales. And then the investment from the company side is expected to be 10 lakhs and the balance would be put up by the franchisee.
What would be your revenue from online and offline sales?
I am not looking at revenue from the stores directly I want to target the customers. The idea behind this is to reach large number of people so that they can come to the stores and experience the various appliances. So we are expecting from each stores to reach to at least 200 people to come and experience in a month. So that’s a very small average of 7 to 8 people coming Delhi and experiencing our products. Our aim is just to give experience to a customer that’s why we have named it ‘Experience Centre’.
What changes are there in the consumer buying behavior of water purifier?
Well the consumer has become more aware about the quality of water. As the water quality is going down and it requires better quality and they have been confessing that they need water which is free of dissolved impurities. People have started understanding this. So that’s a good sign.
Have you experienced any unusual questions from consumers on water purifier?
Today People are on the internet and they have read many things online only. They are knowledgeable now. We have to be ethical and we need to tell them what it is.
How the smaller cities (tier 2 tier3) are responding?
They all are responding. If you go to tier 3 cities you can see the problem of water quality that it is further bad because they do not have any processing capacity. They need to depend only on the board well water. Only problem is that they do not have too much of money to buy. The quality of water in poor cities is bad so the demand does come from there as well.
What are the new products that Kent has entered over the last one year?
We have come out with the Kitchen appliances from which it is easy to cook food; a healthy food. For example we have come out with a noodle maker which can make noodles at home. We have also come out with the appliances which can make Atta dough and can also make bread. This is something useful to make healthy Atta. For which you don’t have to do it by hand. Other than these appliances are rice cooker and Turbo Blender.
How big is the branded market size?
I am not looking at the market size. I am looking more at introducing this new segment and slowly the market will be created.
How much are you planning to spend on advertising?
We will be spending at least 10 crores in these appliances.
What was the trigger for diversification Brand Kent into small kitchen appliances?
We are into space of health and we are working to give pure water through water purifier. We have come up with the appliances that will help in cooking healthy food. So health is our main priority.
We can see many national players have forayed into small kitchen appliances; the existing ones too have become very aggressive. You being a late entrant do you see this as a disadvantage? Do you see competition in it?
I have not come into appliances which are commonly manufactured by the manufacturer. My appliances are totally innovative and totally different. None of my product is competing with anyone except rice cooker.
What edge do you have over your rivals?
I don’t have any because there is no one else who is making noodle maker or washing vegetable appliances.
What challenges and opportunities do you see for yourself in this market?
Challenge is educating the consumer, unless you devastate them they don’t come to the shop to buy. And when they come to the shop we have to convince them to see the product and then they decide. So these are my challenges.
And for opportunity I can say we are beginners, we are the first people to come up with these appliances. These are beneficial for every home. In the long term it is opportunity for us.
Any other comment that you would like to make
I’d like to inform consumers about the new products that have come in and how it will benefit them. I am looking at how to help people by making cooking easier and healthier.