Titan On Overseas Expansion Spree

Mumbai, September 23: | Updated: Sep 24 2003, 05:30am hrs
Tatas-owned Titan Industries Ltd, which is currently on an overseas expansion drive, plans to expand its manufacturing capacity at its Dehra Dun plant to meet the growing demands of its export markets.

In line with the McKinsey recommendations, the companys watch business has been bifurcated into two divisions Titan Business Unit and Sonata Business Unit.

Titan Industries Ltd, chief operating officer, Bijou Kurien said, The company is a pioneer in establishing the Indian brand in the global market and bringing it at par with other international brands. After establishing our presence in 29 countries around the world, we are eyeing new markets in countries like Latin America and the Far East, which include Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Japan and Korea, among others, for export of Titan watches. We already have a presence in Indonesia and Philippines, and this year, we plan to consolidate our position in these markets. As far as expansion is concerned, we plan to expand the manufacturing unit at Dehra Dun and balance our capacity in Hosur. Post expansion, the manufacturing capacity will increase from seven million watches to eight million watches, he said, after unveiling its international collection of watches. The company has exported its watches to 29 countries through 2,000 international stores. It includes Middle-East, Europe, United Arab Emirates and South-East Asian countries like Singapore and Malaysia. At present, Titans retail value is over Rs 1,000 crore, making it one of the few Indian consumer brands bringing pride to the Made in India label.

As for the Indian market, Mr Kurien said: We are now planning to expand our exclusive showrooms called The World of Titan from 155 to 175, within a year. Besides, we are also planning to increase our retail presence from our existing strength of 7,500 multi-branded outlets, across the country. At present, we have around 600 service centres, as well. Recently, Titan Industries has repositioned Titan Watches in the Indian market by way of introducing an international range of watches priced between Rs 2,000 and Rs 7,000. The range of contemporary-styled watches is available in 55 designs, and is targeted at the evolved Indian consumer, who aspires for the latest in international trends.

On the rationale behind the move, Mr Kurien said: The watch market in India is estimated at 25-30 million units per year with a consumption level of 25 to 30 thousand persons per year as compared to 60 in China and 400 in the USA. With the abolition of restrictions on import of watches, many large international brands have entered the Indian market. According to Mr Kurian, as part of its marketing strategy, the international look will be carried via point-of-sale, with a new retail look and POP material at all Titan stores and supported by a mass media advertising campaign.