Whirlpool India to break even by March '08

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New Delhi, Oct 10 (UNI) Home appliances major Whirlpool India today said it will break even by the end of this fiscal while targeting a 20-25 per cent jump in its topline products during the second quarter.

''We are improving quarter on quarter and are hoping for a breakeven by March-2008,'' company's Vice President (Marketing) Shantanu Das Gupta told reporters here after launching new products, including refrigerators and microwaves.

Company's operating profit was Rs 63 crore last year and net earnings were Rs 15 crore.

The company will invest Rs 80 crore in next 12-18 months in expanding its product portfolio, Managing Director Arvind Uppal said, adding that volumes are increasing by 20-25 per cent.

''Exports are under pressure as the margins have gone down and are affecting our profitability,'' Mr Gupta said, adding that it accounted nearly 12 per cent of company's total revenues.

With the launch of new products, company expects a growth of 20 per cent in this festive season over last year.

''We expect to increase share in the fast growing frost free segment to 30 per cent by the end of this fiscal. The company is also targeting an agressive 10 per cent share in tne microwave category,'' he added.

Whirlpool products are avilable in 7,500 retail outlets across the country. It has a 25 per cent market share in direct cool segment and 22.5 per cent in frost free. It is also mulling to enter into the water purifier and modular kitchen segment.

The new Whirlpool professional refrigerators are priced at Rs 31,200-Rs 38,100 while the microwave at Rs 4,000-9,250.

The company has three manufacturing plants at Faridabad, Ranjangaon and Puducherry.

UNI

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