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Voltas topples LG in AC league

business Updated: Jul 15, 2012 21:53 IST
Rachit Vats

Tata Group firm Voltas has toppled Korean giant LG India to regain the numero uno slot in India's growing airconditioner (AC) market, according to the global consultancy major Nielsen.

India's AC market is currently estimated Rs 7,000 crore. Aided by its gaining foothold in the AC market, Voltas is looking to cash in on the oppurtunity to re-enter the refrigerator market.

"Voltas grew at 32% CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) over the last five years even as the industry grew at 23% in volume terms," said Pradeep Bakshi, chief operating officer, Voltas India. "Despite volatile market conditions we expect to hold onto the leadership position."

The Tata Group firm has been playing catch-up for over a decade now. After losing marketshare to Korean giants LG and Samsung prior to 2006, Voltas took on itself to re-energise and scale up its retail presence. In May the company toppled LG Electronics India to regain the number one slot in the AC segment.

In volume terms, LG's marketshare in multi-brand outlets - a key sales channel that accounts for almost 90% of AC dealerships - stood at 17.7% in May against 18.3% in case of Voltas, the GfK-Nielsen India survey has found. Samsung retained its third slot in room ACs but its marketshare plunged from 14.5% in July 2011 to 10% in May 2012.

"We had a weak retail presence with less than 1,000 touchpoints a few years ago," said Bakshi. "Today we have grown over 5,000 retail touchpoints. Voltas lost marketshare to Korean giants most because of the weak retail presence."