Hyderabad: Home-grown Wonderchef Home Appliances, co-founded by chef Sanjeev Kapoor and Ravi Saxena, is looking at setting up a new unit in Telangana. While the Telangana unit is in proposal stage, the company is currently setting up units in Baddi and Belgaum. Telangana currently contributes about seven per cent of the company’s national sales.
Ravi Saxena, co-founder and managing director, Wonderchef Home Appliances, told Telangana Today, “We see a lot of potential in Telangana as the State is in the forefront of a lot of new developments. We find it favourable because of the speedy government approvals and the support industry gets.”
He added, “Telangana is a key market for us, as retail is very well developed here. All the major department stores and retail chains operate in the State. Wonderchef already has five outlets in Hyderabad including the new outlet opened in GVK One.”
Mumbai-based company has its own manufacturing units as well as contract manufacturing arrangement for certain products. Wonderchef today makes about 450 products. He informed, “We are currently setting up new units in Baddi (Himachal Pradesh) and Belgaum (Karnataka), which will be operational by end of 2019. We will be investing around Rs 30 crores in these facilities. They will cater to both domestic and overseas markets.”
Wonderchef operates across formats- retail, e-commerce, digital TV and army canteens, across India. The company besides selling its own branded products has a tie up to sell American home appliance brand KitchenAid, owned by Whirlpool Corporation in its outlets
As a brand, the company’s 70 per cent customers are in urban locations while the remaining 30 per cent are in rural India. Rural penetration has picked up through e-commerce and TV shopping, as retail expansion in these areas has been limited. The company gets orders from about 4,000 towns of India from TV shopping alone while e-commerce platforms get orders from about 5,000 locations across the country.
On the innovation front, the company has recently introduced steamer cookware and steel bottles, instead of plastic bottles that are usually used to keep water in refrigerators.
Sanjeev Kapoor said, “Innovation is enabling product access to the rural parts of India. For instance, we had been approached by a non-profit initiative SEVA backed by the United Nations that wanted us demonstrate the use and benefits of induction cookers and pans in UP, Bihar and Gujarat. The penetration of induction cookers is happening at rural level as electricity access is improving.”
Saxena said, “We are present in 8,000 multi-brand outlets, which we want to take to 15,000 outlets in next two years. In modern trade, comprising of supermarkets and hypermarkets, we are in 1,500 outlets, which will go up to 2,000 in two years. We have 20 company-owned outlets now and this number will go up to 50 by 2021. We may explore franchisee route in near future.”
In addition to the domestic market, the company also markets its products overseas including US, Canada, Middle East, Mauritius, Maldives and Australia.
“We are entering the UK market this week. Several retail outlets have already started keeping our products. We are meeting customers there and will further spread our presence in the UK,” he informed.