What are the current trends and innovations impacting the Indian FMEG industry?
The FMEG industry is witnessing a major overhaul as the consumer buying pattern has undergone a radical transformation since the time of Covid-19 crisis across categories. The consumer of today is value conscious, willing to experiment and be well informed. Also, as work from home continues for most companies and with people spending more time at home, the demand for smart appliances in the past few months has significantly increased driven by convenience. For Havells – ease of operations, for the consumer, is central to our product innovation.
The pandemic has also brought the significance of safety & hygiene to the fore. With customer centricity at the core, we at Havells have constantly been working towards building safe and technologically advanced products in order to satisfy their needs. Keeping hygiene as another core attribute, we have introduced Crabtree anti-bacterial switch range that reduces the spread of microbes by 99.9% – and is extremely useful for deployment at public places.
How has this year been for Havells? What are the differences that you see in the market in pre & post lockdown period?
COVID-19 pandemic has ravaged the economic foundations globally. The pandemic has changed the way we plan for businesses and operate within the ecosystem. The crisis gave us an opportunity to go back to the drawing board and come up with future-ready plans that account for the ‘new normal’. This entails assessing costs structures, investing in technology, and creating more digital avenues for sales. This would also mean aligning our production capabilities to meet the needs of the post pandemic world.
The major difference in the pre- and post-lockdown period witnessed by Havells is the need for contingency planning and execution. Consumers are reacting to brands differently; their buying pattern is undergoing considerable change. Even post the lockdown, consumers may not be that willing to physically visit retail stores, thus we have geared up to digitize our offerings and ramped up our online hyper local delivery model Online-to-Offline, or O2O for short, for facilitating the customers.
Even during the lockdown, more than half the customer service issues were solved digitally, through solutions like video calls, self-help AVs to educate customers on Do-It-Yourself (DIY) methods of servicing and basic repairs. As a result, even post lockdown nearly 30% of our customers still reach us through on-line media, a significant jump from the pre-Pandemic era.
Please tell us about the key smart features of your recentl y launched new range. How has been the market response so far?
Electricity is the very basis of the new technological revolution that we are experiencing in our daily lives. Every aspect of productivity and efficiency is powered by an electrical gadget. The trends clearly point out to a need for electrical safety and preventive maintenance to lower the downtime. The power system is technologically superior, smart, self-healing and conducive to IT enabled data sharing and building management.
Addressing the need, Havells being one of the pioneers in the switchgear segment, had introduced ST^Dx range of switchgears that is a communication-ready range, This range provides a user-friendly one-touch interface to building’s myriad electrical load layout. Through its intricately designed interface, users can easily monitor and control electrical circuits right from MCCB to the residential distribution board level.
With multifunctional capabilities, the advanced version of Havells ST^DX offers real time monitoring status and facilitate pro-active maintenance of the device. The entire range will improve uptime – making modern businesses more competitive and limiting intervention cost. With advanced programming of load cycle and efficient energy management, the range is aiming to minimize energy wastage and improve sustainability. Designed to meet the modern needs, the advanced range ensures safety with flag indication features along with providing ease of usage with its user-friendly features as well.
The response from consumers is indeed very positive. The range has found tremendous use at various Industrial plants, Hospitals and commercial buildings where it provides greater control over operation, maintenance and gives improved efficiency. These devices have addressed demand of a large set of customers who wanted a reliable communication ready range with three critical features – control, monitoring and metering. IOT based solutions in near future will enhance the overall customer experience of electricity consumption with greater control and reliability.
We understand that Havells India has partnered with Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd to strengthen the distribution of electrical protection devices. Please tell us more about it.
To ensure safety of users against hazards of electric leakage, Havells India and TATA Power-DDL signed an MoU to strengthen the distribution of electrical protection devices called Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCCB) in North and North-Western regions of Delhi. Apart from this, the partnership also focuses on creating awareness around good wiring practices and circuit protection devices through extensive awareness and training programme. Havells, as a thought leader in the Switch gear space, has always prioritized user safety and was the first to provide a 6-year warranty on Miniature Circuit Breakers (MCB) and Earth Leakage Circuit Breaker (ELCB/RCCB) when used along with Havells Distribution Board.
The association will help us sensitize consumers on the need to incorporate best in class protection devices in their homes and together we shall ensure that consumers are aware of the use of Earth-Leakage or Residual Current Circuit Breaker (ELCB/RCCB) through TATA Power-DDL Customer Care Centers.
How is Havells playing a major role in ensuring safety of the consumers from electrical hazards? Can you share about Havells’ products to address the situation?
Havells India has always been a thought leader in espousing the cause of Electrical Safety and we have taken various steps to reinforce the need for the same. We have constantly provided training to electricians in order to promote electrical safety. We have also signed several MoUs with DISCOMs, widespread consumer interaction through RWA/IWA(s) etc., where our technical personnel explain the advantages of using right quality protective equipment, for the safety of both – their equipment and their precious lives. As stated above, keeping the safety of consumers in India, Havells India and TATA Power -DDL signed an MoU to strengthen the distribution of electrical protection devices called Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCCB) in North and North-Western regions of Delhi.
To reiterate the messaging around consumer safety, we recently launched our campaign #ShockKaVaccination, in a bid to promote electrical safety through its RCCB product range, urging consumers to install circuit protection devices to protect themselves and their family from electrical shocks. The digital film visually emphasizes on the risk of an electric shock in the absence of RCCB a very simple yet vital device that should be a part of every home. We have also developed adaptor and plug type solution to make it easy for consumers to adopt the life safety solution. These Plug-and-Play devices are getting a positive response from consumers and solving critical application problems of OEM .
What are your offerings for home automation & control, and how is the response in the domestic market?
Havells IoT ecosystem is a technology stack, which is consisting of multiple layers including product hardware, embedded software, connectivity software, product cloud, AI/ML applications, mobile application, a suite of security tools, and integration with business systems. We have decided to make a long-term commitment to smart products with a clear vision of penetrating deeper into people’s homes – for all their electrical needs. Our objective is not only to provide connected appliances – but offer smart solutions that will offer comfortable, safe, hassle-free living for our consumers.
Is there any new addition in your products’ list for the wire & cable segment?
We have recently launched solar and shielded cables range. Within an industrial setting, shielded cables ensure that noise from EMI does not disrupt the operation of other equipment. For instance, the factory floor has typically electrically noisy environment. EMI is usually generated by an external source that affects an electrical circuit through electrostatic coupling, conduction, or electromagnetic induction. Our solar cable category has witnessed an encouraging demand from the consumers – especially in commercial segment. It offers prominent features such as environment sustainability and increases energy efficiency. Transmission mode of solar energy power generation is cheap, clean, and reliable. This increases bankability of solar projects and has therefore emerged as an important component for such initiatives.