Kolkata based Stellar, a unit of Hi-Life Traders Pvt. Ltd, is a pioneer in the elite furniture and furnishing category in eastern India. Stellar stands for its range of elegant and fine products with not only a diverse collection, but at the same time affirms the quality of all its products.
How do you see the market of home furnishing is evolving in India? Also, shed light on your journey so far?
The furnishing and the furniture segment in India is evolving constantly. People are keen to design or decorate their homes in innovative style or manner. They not only invite an interior designer but also want exclusive accessories to compliment it. But demonetisation and GST has affected the Indian economy and it has hit a new low. As the economy rises so will the market.
My father had started this company in a 200sqft store which is now a 14000sqft showroom. Apart from this we have showrooms in four other locations in Kolkata. One in Bhubaneswar and two in Delhi.
Kindly shed light on your distribution model in online and offline space? What are the strategies to scale up the distribution?
We generally don’t sell online because we cater to the premium segment of consumers. Talking about the distribution model, we work on wholesale, retail and projects. But we are opening an online segment to touch the economical segment. We have successfully delivered major projects like HHI, ITC, TAJ, NOVOTEL, WESTIN, MARRIOTT, HYATT and VEDIC VILLAGE. Speaking of the market we are launching a new economical brand for furnishing and furniture which is going to cater to the mass.
According to you, what are the major challenges when it comes to home furnish retailing in India?
The major challenge is the introduction of Chinese fabrics in the Indian market because the quality they offer is very low. As there are many new players who are coming in, it drives the market and hence the competition is high.
Kindly shed light on your product and categories? Also, shed light on your largest category?
We are one stop solution for all furnishings and the furniture. In Furnishings we have curtains, sheers, upholstery, pure leather, leatherette, blinds, curtain rods and tracks, flooring woods, carpets and rugs, mattresses, wallpaper, tie bands, beds and baths. The largest selling category is furniture. We have curtains and fabrics, leatherette items in furnishings and in furniture we have dining tables and centre tables and sofa sets. As I said we are the one stop solution for all furnishings and furniture requirements.
Kindly shed light on your pricing strategy? Also mention your average bill size?
We don’t follow the discount model our normal prices are less than that of the discounts offered by the competitors. Mostly our customers want us to furnish their entire home so we take orders as per the consumers budget. It depends on the project; it could range from 50k to 50 lacs.
Who do you see as your competition within same space? It’s been 22years that we are into this market and we cater to the premium segment. We have a few competitors, but with our quality and collections we don’t worry about them.
At last, kindly highlight your growth plan for 2018?
We have already started expanding our business into various parts of the country. We have recently opened two showrooms in Delhi and one in Bhubaneswar. We are planning to open five more showrooms in the different parts of the country. We are also looking at opening various economical brands for the furnishing and the furniture sectors and venturing into online market so that people have an easy access to our products.