Companies

Scorching summer spreads cheer for AC makers

Meenakshi Verma Ambwani New Delhi | Updated on June 06, 2013

BL07_NDMVA_AC

Market likely to grow 10% this year, say industry players

While the people are sweating it out in the sizzling summer, air-conditioner makers are a happy lot. For, after facing two tough years, air-conditioner (AC) sales have witnessed an uptick in the first half of this year.

The market is expected to grow by at least 10 per cent this year, say players in the AC market.

In the past two years, several factors, such as the big increase in AC prices, the slowing economy, along with a flippant summer, had adversely impacted AC sales.

Pradeep Bakshi, Chief Operating Officer, Unitary Products Business Group, Voltas, said the industry has witnessed 10-12 per cent growth in the past 2 months. “We have seen a growth of 25 per cent in sales. The month of May has been particularly good for AC sales,” he added.

While players said that March and April saw slow uptake, May ensured sales growth in North and West India. This was after some growth was recorded in the South and East.

Saurabh Baisakhiya, Business Head, Air-conditioners, LG India, said, “This is a significant year for the AC market in the country, especially because of the changes in the consumer purchase patterns and behaviour. Consumers are now buying ACs not just for cooling but for overall comfort, too. They prefer more energy-efficient products and air-conditioners are among the top five consumer durables on their priority list.”

He said consumers now were not only buying ACs for bedrooms, but other rooms, too. He said LG was aiming at 20 per cent growth in the category.

But, players also believe that the next six-seven months will be key for this to be a full turnaround year for the AC market, considering regions like the South witness a second summer.

Kanwal Jeet Jawa, Managing Director, Daikin India, said conservatively speaking, the market could at least see a 10-12 per cent growth. “We at Daikin are aiming a growth of 25 per cent in the AC market. If the signs remain encouraging, the overall market could even grow at 15-20 per cent.”

Mahesh Krishnan, Senior Vice-President, Consumer Electronics Business, Samsung India, had earlier said that air-conditioners were slowly becoming a necessity for Indian consumers and were no more a luxury item.

> meenakshi.v@thehindu.co.in

Published on June 06, 2013

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