Whirlpool to invest Rs 200 cr on product devp

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Kochi, Aug 6: Home appliances major Whirlpool today said it was aiming at an aggressive growth to become the number one appliances company in India and would invest Rs 200 crore on product development over the next three years to achieve the goal.

Addressing a press conference here, Company Vice-President, Marketing, Shantanu Das Gupta said Whirlpool was fast catching up with the market leader in various categories and was aiming to be the numero uno by 2010. ''We will start from Kerala, where we hope to become the number one by September this year,'' he said.

Unveiling Whirlpool's Onam festival offer, Whirlpool Vice-President, Sales, Tamal Kanti Sinha said the company notched up sales worth Rs 55 crore during Onam last year and was hoping to garner Rs 100 crore during the festival this year.

Talking about the company's growth strategy, Mr Das Gupta said that besides launching innovative models in its 'strongholds' of refrigerators and washing machines, Whirlpool was also focusing on air conditioners and microwaves.

It was also entering new product areas such as water purifiers, launched in January, 2008. Priced between Rs 12,500 and Rs 22,900, the 'Purafresh' range of water purifiers, coming in three models, were based on Reverse Osmosis.

The company was also launching 'built-in appliances' such as hobs, hoods, ovens and dishwashers and accessories such as fabric softeners and washing machine cleansers.

As part of its Onam offer-- 'Yellathillum Magic Returns' -- which would be on from August nine to September 12, 2008, Whirlpool would be tying up with almost 2,500 retail outlets in Kerala, ranging from jewellery shops to groceries. Purchasers at these stores would get lucky draw coupons for Whirlpool products including a full home set.

UNI

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