Amid a gloomy market, it's raining freebies and offers - from return tickets to Dubai to blu-ray players, LED TV, refrigerators to washing machines and other assured gifts -as consumer durables makers attempt to cash in on the festive season kicking off with Onam in Kerala. Companies like Whirlpool, LG and Sony India are aiming for a double digit growth of sales in Kerala alone this Onam.
"We are aiming at a growth of 25 per cent in Kerala this Onam which translates to a turnover of Rs 200 crore," Whirlpool of India Vice-President (Corporate Affairs and Strategy, Asia South) Shantanu DasGupta told PTI. The company has launched aggressive marketing strategy in Kerala for Onam, which includes assured gifts, foreign trips and even help reuniting families.
"Our marketing plans includes assured gifts for consumers buying a Whirlpool appliance as well as a bumper scratch card offer of 51 return tickets to Dubai for a couple," he said. In addition, the company will fly down 25 Keralites living in the Middle East who have not visited Kerala in the last three years, uniting them with their families to celebrate Onam, he added.
South Korean major LG, which is expecting a 20 per cent growth in sales during festive season is offering prizes ranging from LED TV, washing machines, refrigerators to audio systems by scratching card under its festive offer "Onnamante Onaghoshangal". "Overall, we expect 20 per cent growth in sales during festive season in our focused categories. We are targeting turnover of around Rs 360 crore during Onam which is a growth of around 15 per cent over last year," LG India Head Corporate Marketing Sanjay Chitkara.
Sony India is also not falling behind, offering a wide range of freebies in Kerala for Onam across product categories including Bravia, Xperia, VAIO and Cyber-shot. It is offering free Blu-Ray player, movie titles and bass headphone, cordless headphone on purchase of different TVs under the Bravia range priced from Rs 16,999 to Rs 16 lakh. "The company expects sales worth Rs 170 crore from Jul-Sep 13, targeting a growth rate of 34 per cent over corresponding period last year," Sony India said.
Korean major Samsung has launched 'Varnavisayam', a special promotion scheme for Onam in Kerala, where it is providing assured gifts on purchase of flat panel TVs, air conditioners and washing machines. The firm has launched new products just ahead of the festive season ranging from Ultra HD TV set to air conditioner with jet engine technology and new T 9000 refrigerator. "We will be further enhancing our panel TV and premium refrigerator range later this month," said Samsung India Senior Vice President, Consumer Electronics Business Atul Jain.
Whirlpool also said it is enhancing product range by launching new hi-capacity refrigerators, washing machine and microwave models. Chitkara of LG also said that company was "betting big on our flagship launches across categories which will certainly help in strengthening our market leadership". However, the companies are yet to finalise their schemes for the coming mega festivals Durga Puja and Diwali. The festive season contributes 30 to 35 per cent of the industry's sales. Most of these schemes run for two month and are generally extended for two weeks.