Vijay Sales has been a pioneer in electronic consumer durables retailing in India much before the organised retail came in. In its earlier days, it was the only white goods store to have the TV display always on from the time the store opened till it closed. Also it was the first one to promote new technologies like flat panel TVs and did aggressive marketing even more than the vendors at that time. Vijay Sales also pioneered the exchange scheme on consumer durables.
Scheme related promotions are strongly dependent on the print media although radio and hoardings are used occasionally for the purpose. But hoardings and radio are predominantly used as mediums for brand building; whilst it is print that helps catalyse instant sales.
Brand offering is built around rendering value to a great experience (shopping) and also maintaining the widest range in consumer durables.
The Challenges overcome
The major challenges in this sector have been manpower, real estate and technology required to run the business. The company thus constantly and consciously recruits and trains its employees for handling new products and developments. It has always taken stores outside market areas to decrease the costs and supported it with innovative marketing to create a self-sustained market for the store. Vijay Sales was one of the early movers to get its systems computerised in the mid 80s, and today it has their own customised ERP system in place.
Vijay Sales is currently present in four markets, namely, Mumbai, Pune, Gujarat and Delhi. The company does not aim to move forward until and unless the present markets do not saturate, since, there are a lot of front-end and back-end services attached to the white goods.
His understanding of the retail business and his learning in this process
“In retail if we focus at the customer (his needs and his expectations), and strive to fulfill the same, then this business is very simple to run. I feel the top managements’ job is to un-complicate the business as much as possible. And last but not the least is that this is a people’s business and only those who love to be with people are entitled to be in this business.”