Chennai, April 13 

Blue Star has ramped up the production capacity of deep freezers and storage water coolers at an investment of ₹.130 crore as the leading air conditioning company expects the commercial refrigeration segment to grow at a CAGR of 25 per cent in the next five years. 

The company expects stronger growth in commercial refrigeration products such as deep freezers, storage water coolers and modular cold rooms as demand for such products is expected to surge after the pandemic phase.  

Key driver

While the ice-cream category will be a major driver for its deep freezers, pharma, healthcare, e-commerce, food and beverages sectors are to drive demand for modular cold rooms. The opening up of hotels and restaurants is to drive growth for kitchen refrigeration equipment.  

“We have invested ₹130 crore in doubling the capacity of deep freezers at Wada in Maharashtra. Also, water cooler production has been moved to Wada from the Himachal Pradesh factory. With the production ramp-up, we can produce 2 lakh deep freezers and one lakh water coolers per annum,” said B Thiagarajan, Managing Director, Blue Star Ltd, while unveiling the new range of deep freezers. 

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The company expects about 30 per cent growth in deep freezers, water coolers and cold room products.  

The new production capacity for products such as deep freezers by the company is also a significant step as now locally-made freezers with a strong service backup will be available for the Indian customers as most of the freezers have been imported from China.  

Barring compressors, most of the other parts for freezers have been indigenised by the company. “Pricewise, imported ones may be cheaper. But such freezers have to be tropicalised for our temperature conditions. Most importantly, holding time should be longer at least for 9-10 hours when power cuts happen in the hinterlands,” he said. 

Blue Star’s indigenously designed and manufactured, range of deep freezers, come with temperature controls ranging +2°C to -24°C. Available in hardtop and glass top options, these deep freezers of the company come in storage capacities ranging from 300 litres to 650 litres. 

“For smaller capacities such as 50, 100 or 150 litres, which are predominantly required in small towns and rural areas, we get those products manufactured outside as per our designs. However, we will also start making these after 3 years when there will be justifiable volumes,” said Thiagarajan.  

The company continues to maintain a leadership position in deep freezers (market size is about ₹1,200 crore), storage water coolers (₹250 crore market) and modular cold rooms (₹600 crore market) with market shares of 27 per cent, 32 per cent and 37 per cent, respectively. Its commercial refrigeration business’ annual revenue is in the region of ₹700 crore.