What kind of growth are you expecting in 2018?
We are targeting a growth rate of nearly 22-23% for the next five years, steering our focus towards the B2C segment and we’ll be introducing various solutions for interior decor which will compliment our furniture solution range. Traditionally in India, we have been quite strong in edge banding solutions, therefore, we have introduced solid surfaces and acrylic solid surfaces embarking towards a futuristic growth. Our vision in the coming year is to be a one-stop solution for the interior decor segment. We are looking at 2020 and beyond, as we strive to create another growth curve for the organisation for which we are currently researching and working on, hence, many new products will be launched accordingly.
Where does India stand in the global portfolio of REHAU?
The plant that we have in India is among the top three plants globally, with respect to its quality, safety standards, and complexities that it manages. We have a strong support from the owners, supervisory boards and the global executive board throughout. They certainly believe in India’s growth story and have continuously been investing in our three plants which are a testament to their investment in India. We are gradually Indianising but we still have to come up with solutions which are accepted locally. In our endeavour to localise our product we have launched products which are needed here and may not be required in the other parts of the world.
Any specific region which has the maximum demand for your products?
South of India always out scores just like any other business, then there is a close race between North and West of India.
When and where can we expect REHAU experience centres?
We already have two experience centres in Delhi and Bangalore. We plan to create REHAU lounge across various parts of the country. This could be company owned or a franchise model. We want to create the experiences for the customers where they can walk in and not only have a physical experience of our products but also have a virtual experience. We want to provide them a 3D software where they can see how their walls and furnitures will look like when they use REHAU products in different colours. We are also coming up with an inspiration express bus which will feature all REHAU products and it will be launched in January 2018. It will be on the ground for nearly 270 days and will be flagged off from North, travelling across the country. It will be stationed across premium locations where consumers, architects and dealers will have the opportunity to get on board and experience our solutions. Instead of calling them to our experience centre this will be a mobile experience centres which we will take to the consumers.
Throw some light on the expansion and retail strategies.
REHAU will be expanded in India in terms of its capacity. We have just put up our third plant in Vadodara – Gujarat. We will be moving into boards, laminates and solid surfaces. In future we may invest in localising many of these technologies. We are also looking at the metro powered with third rail technology which is entirely an aluminium extrusion covered with a polymer plastic strip to protect the high voltage. We are currently working for Kolkata metro and we are also in the race for other metros which are built with this technology
Tell us about the current industry and market trends.
According to me, demonetisation and the new tax rates are long term growth drivers for the industry. Although, currently the market is stuck due to the prevailing liquidity issue in the market, but I am sure the market will gradually come out of it. As far as REHAU is concerned, we have different systems in different parts of the world depending upon what are the diplomatic needs and architectural requirements of that region. For India we started in 2011 and we have gradually been localising and Indianising. The developer market poses maximum amount of risk in terms of liquidity. The developers need a long payment repayment cycles because of which our fabricators get impacted and in return, we get impacted.