With expectations of a prolonged summer season with scorching temperatures, AC makers and beverage companies are gearing up to garner strong sales. In recent days, the country has already seen an uptick in temperatures, indicating the early onset of summer.

Expecting a double-digit growth over last year, air-conditioner makers have launched new ranges of products. While air conditioner penetration is still low even in urban areas, the companies are confident they can gain more market share.

Satish NS, President, Haier Appliances India said buoyed by the prediction of the early summer season and temperatures expected to stay “above normal”, there will be a strong demand for cooling appliances.

“The air-conditioner sector is poised to grow more than 30-40 per cent this year and our aim is to achieve a double-digit growth. Backed by our state-of-art manufacturing facility in Greater Noida, we are equipped to address the demand from consumers in 2023,” he added.

‘Record double-digit growth’

Gurmeet Singh, Chairman and Managing Director, Johnson Controls-Hitachi Air Conditioning India Ltd said that the company is expecting a “record double-digit growth” with an aim to grow by 25 per cent in the first half of this year, ahead of industry growth rates.

AC companies usually crank up plants full throttle to manufacture air-conditioners by December. However, in a bid to ensure that they meet summer demand, many AC and beverage companies began production of their products earlier than usual and have also expanded capacity.

Kamal Nandi, Business Head and Executive Vice-President, Godrej Appliances said, “We began manufacturing earlier than usual in November and have also increased AC production capacity. With a wide air-conditioner range, we are targeting 2x sales growth over last year in the summer season.”

Taking stock

Ravi Jaipuria, Chairman, Varun Beverages, the leading bottler of PepsiCo, told investors in an earning call, “instead of starting prebuilding (stocks of beverages) in January and February, we started prebuilding in December itself to avoid any stock-out situations”.

Jaipura added, “The key season for beverages starts around Holi and this year, Holi is going to be about 10 days prior to last year which necessitated building stock from December.”

Dabur India has also recently said that it has augmented capacities for beverage production and is geared up to meet demand this summer.

“Producers of cold beverages, ice creams, fruit Juices, cooling hair oils, and talc are anticipating strong demand for their products considering the early and prolonged summers this year. Having said that last year also India faced harsh summers, so one will also need to factor in a high base for these categories,” noted Abneesh Roy, Executive Director, Nuvama Institutional Equities.