Cashing on the recession

Symphony air coolers are expanding into industrial boundaries.
Cashing on the recession


Symphony to tap the large format retail stores in India as air cooling leads to a 90 per cent saving in power cost compared to air conditioning. In an interaction, Achal Bakery, Chairman and Managing Director, Symphony Ltd shared his plans with Ankur Gaurav.

Ankur Gaurav: Where do you find your business for this type of air cooling systems?

Achal Bakery: There is no estimate of how many buildings are in the construction mode. The market for this is not yet created and has huge potentials. There are enough places where air conditioner cannot be installed and there is hardly anything done for cooling. Symphony brings the right solution for them.

AG: What is the target for this type of cooling systems?

AB: This solution is especially for the industrial units and since that area is untapped, we expect a business of around INR 100 Crore.

AG: Till now which all projects have you successfully handled?

AB: There has been many, Hero Group, Nestle plant, Tractor India ltd, Baba Ramdev Ashram , Swaminarayan temple.

AG: What is your budget for product innovation?

AB: If product innovation is concerned we target on three aspects: Better performance, more features, and less power consumption. We generally spend around 5 per cent of our revenue on product innovation and R&D.

AG: This fiscal year due to recession most of the buyers shied away from the market, how was your performance this summer?

AB: Recession was a reason to slow down the sales but the extended summer in northern and eastern part of the country was contributing to the sales. We did well this season and our growth rate was 60 per cent better than last year’s summer.

AG: How different is your strategy for the smaller towns and villages where you are trying to penetrate now?

AB: We have a very strong distribution network of around 20,000 dealers across the country, which has made it possible for us to reach out to the villages. Surprisingly we have witnessed a response better than expected in these towns. Though India is a price sensitive market, as far as coolers are concerned, the sale of the costliest symphony cooler was highest in one of the villages in MP. That proves that people want the best product even in villages. So there is no need to shift the strategies.

AG: What was the revenue last year and how much contribution had come from exports?

AB: Our revenue figures last year was about INR 330 Crores in which exports contributed to over INR 100 Crores.

AG: Who do you see as your competitors?

AB: We do not have many competitors and we want more and more players to come into this business. It will indeed help the market to expand. There are unorganised players who have twice as much as organised market share, but to compete with them we want more players to venture into air cooling system. 

Achal Bakeri