Country’s only 100 percent European Kitchen brand Würfel Küche is leapfrogging with its retail growth. The brand has recently launched its first new modular kitchen and wardrobes outlet in Mumbai while planning two to three more such outlets in the city. Overall the brand is in the spree of launching eight more stores by the end of current fiscal while targeting to have total 100 stores across metros to tier III cities by the end of 2020. The brand is also going to venture to Doha, Uman, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh markets. Thus, briefing about the brands future retail strategy Khanindra Barman, CEO & Co-founder of Würfel Küche spoke to Indianretailer.com on the launch of its first outlet in Mumbai.
Why did you choose this location to start with the Mumbai market?
This location is one of the hubs for all the brands to be here. It is like one stop for all the people who are building houses. So we believe to exist at a location where you have more people of your segment so that it drives you footfall from day one. Therefore it really helps being at this kind of location from branding perspective. This is our first store in Laxmi Industrial Estate in Mumbai and soon we are going to open the second store in Mulund area. Also we are in talks to open a store at Ghodbunder Road in the city.
Rest will be the company owned or franchisee stores?
Würfel Küche is the fastest growing kitchen brand in the country now. We don’t have any company owned store till now. All our stores are partnered with local business partners as franchisees. We work very closely with them like one team. We don’t intend to have our own stores because we want to focus on our products, distribution, research and development and brand growth.
We do minimum of 1500 sqft store and the minimum investment that goes from the franchisee side is Rs 40-50 lakh with the ROI of 12-15 months.
What would be your retail strategy going forward?
Further, next month we are opening in Vadodara. In just two years we have signed-up 27 showrooms out of which this is the 19th showroom that we have launched. The rest 8 showrooms, which we are under construction, are going to open in the next four months. Currently we have 7 stores in Bangalore. And now we are spreading into western belt right from Calicut to Vadodara.
What is the target of stores expansion by 2020?
It’s 100 stores by the end of 2020, it would be spread across tier II and III cities as we feel that there is a big market in the smaller cities. There is no competition in the smaller towns and we have the first mover advantage. Therefore, people associate our brand with high quality products and design in reasonable budget.
By what percentage is the retail growth happening YOY?
In the first year we had 11 stores and by the end of this fiscal year we will have 27 more stores. In the last six months we have focused on stabilizing our existing stores. Every year we are adding 12-15 stores and as we go forward, we plan to add 20-25 stores every year.
What is the average revenue that every store fetches you?
The existing stores have started doing Rs 2.5 to 3 crores per annum.
What is the uniqueness of the brand?
The uniqueness of the brand is that it is completely a European product brand. We are the only one who is doing 100 percent European kitchen being an Indian brand. All the products are imported from Germany and assembled out of our home town Bangalore to be delivered in the Indian market. Basically we are getting high end European products close to Indian pricing.
How is the adoption of this European style kitchen across big metros to small cities?
Surprisingly our stores are located in places like Jammu, Bhuvaneshwar, Patna as the acceptance of this style of kitchen in small cities is very high. It is very new and wow for them as they have never seen something like this in their whole life. The sale is pretty high at those locations. Our pricing starts at Rs 2 lakh and there is no maximum to it, it goes on beyond Rs 51 lakhs to Rs 2 crores depends on the requirement of the automation. The whole kitchen can be automated.
What are the additions we can see across different categories of products?
The different categories of products come in two ways, for the existing products also the different finishes have been added. The new colors have been added every year and the product range is also increasing, like we are doing kitchens and wardrobe. This year we have introduced vanities, TV units, so eventually it will be like full home solutions. Now people want readymade products over tailored ones in the kitchen. We have reliability on our after finish products as we come up with 10 years of warranty.
How do you see the competition in the market?
We love competition; we always love to be around our competitors so that people can directly compare the products and price. So we always love to open next to our competitor. Competition helps you to be on your toes always while doing research on the products. It’s been a good journey, people have accepted us.
What is your overseas expansion plan?
We also have international locations like Doha, Uman, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and we do have enquiries coming in from Nepal.