Labor shortages, supply chain disruption, the need to keep up with the changing technological trends, etc. are some of the persistent challenges that the manufacturing sector has long struggled with, and it has further worsened in the last two years during the pandemic. However, few manufacturing brands have been able to bring those issues down to a manageable level and continue to clock decent growth.
Home appliances brand Candes amidst the challenges has been able to clock a growth of 25-30 percent MoM organically while also scaling up into newer categories like LED TV and washing machines. As of now, the company is working in six categories: fan, geysers, LED, washing machine, kitchen appliances, etc.
“We have scaled up new categories like LED TV and washing machines along with our existing categories and have seen growth in these categories as compared to last year. We have also expanded our team and its operations," said Vipin Agarwal, Co-founder, Candes.
"Initially, we were operating via only 10 fulfillment centers throughout PAN India which have now increased to over 45. This has helped us to boost up our sales. Organically we have seen the growth of 25-30 percent,” Agarwal further stated.
If we look at the market, there is a big price gap between the organized sector and the unorganized sector. There is a great scope for the brands in the organized sector and they are working aggressively to provide a good customer experience like 24-48 hrs after-sales services with honest pricing. “It is a big market with an ARR of 25 percent, so there is a good scope,” the company stated.
Despite there being many players in the home appliances segment, the industry itself is huge which entails that there is enough scope for growth. The brand thus relies on the right pricing segment to maintain its consumer base.
“By providing honest pricing with good quality to the customers, we have received good response from them,” said Agarwal.
In 2010, the brand started with its OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) business and started supplying to Luminas, Microtech, etc., where the firm built expertise of the products. So, in 2015-16, the firm listed its own brand Candes and started operations in 2017.
While talking about the journey of the brand, Agarwal shared, "So, initially, we focused on offline sales but brands like Amazon and Flipkart were capturing the market at a faster pace. So, in 2019, we listed our brand on these e-commerce marketplaces. We got a very good response in terms of revenue and customer acquisition."
For a manufacturer, technology is the most critical tool that facilitates production and maximizes each worker's output. Consequently, the manufacturing firms have been adopting emergent technologies for the same.
Right now, Candes is working on adopting IoT technologies at scale. Consequently, the company is working to build its app further (which is already live).
Furthermore, it is building an app for all the categories – so that customers can install all appliances through one app.
In terms of the challenges that the company had been facing, the major one was because of the pandemic as it experienced a delay as its team was down with Covid. Apart from that, there was no challenge, the company stated.
“In terms of manufacturing, pricing is coming back so that is not a challenge anymore. We were facing some challenges in manufacturing in Delhi, so we are putting up a new plant in Haryana,” Agarwal added.
Being a major e-commerce firm, Candes gets 85 percent of its revenue from online channels. It is also registered on Amazon, Flipkart, Pepperfry, Udaan, etc. The company has also registered through its fulfillment centers and is present in more than 100 fulfillment centers.
The company informed that it is in talks with a few investors and post raising the funds the company is planning to launch two new categories - ACs and refrigerators - PAN India. The company is hopeful to close the deal in March or April.
Further, Agarwal shared: "For every product, we have more than 250 SKUs (Stock Keeping Unit), and every SKU will be controlled by a single app - we have already done with more 30-40 SKUs and we are working on the rest."