Eveready eyes 50% of sales from flashlights, lighting solutions

The Financial Express- July 29, 2023

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Dry cell battery major Eveready Industries wants to grow its flashlights and lighting solutions businesses much faster than the respective markets so that these two categories can constitute around 50% of the company’s total sales in the next three to four years.

“At the end of the last fiscal, flashlights and lighting solutions contributed around 35% of the company’s total sales. These two segments together would constitute around 50% of our total sales in the next 3-4 years,” Suvamoy Saha, managing director, Eveready Industries, told FE in an interview.

At the end of FY23, batteries segment constituted around 65% of the company’s total sales, while flashlights and lighting solutions contributed around 13% and 22%, respectively. In the lighting solutions market, Eveready Industries is a relatively new entrant.

“The market size is very large and it is growing. We are a very small player today. We have decided that this is going to be the key category for us. Now we have developed the entire portfolio of lighting solutions, which goes into consumers. We are not in the B2B space. We are in the B2C space. We will certainly grow much faster than the market,” Saha said.

In the B2C lighting solutions space, the addressable market for the company is around Rs 10,000 crore. In this space, Eveready’s market share is currently 3%.

“Between lighting solutions and flashlights, we are targeting a mid 20% kind of growth level. It will take us to 50% of our total sales in the next 3-4 years,” the MD said.

For FY23, the company’s revenue from operations stood at Rs 1,320.17 crore, which was up by 10.34% year-on-year. The company was able to beat the trends and gained 50 basis points y-o-y in market share at 53.4% in the batteries segment last fiscal amid overall muted demand conditions.

Eveready is the market leader in both dry cell batteries and flashlights. In FY23, it made good progress in the rechargeable flashlight segment with several new launches.

The company sells dry cell and rechargeable batteries under the brand names ‘Eveready’, ‘PowerCell’, ‘Shakti’ and ‘Uniross’, and flashlights and lanterns under the brand names ‘Eveready’ and ‘PowerCell’.

According to Saha, the flashlight category primarily faces three difficulties– cheap imports from China, lack of standardization in the category and non-compliance by unorganised players to the legal metrology standards.

“Since unroganised players control the majority of the country’s flashlight market, all three of these problems exclusively affect key organised players,” he pointed out.

Presently, the existing import duty on flashlights is 11% in India. However, the sector suffers from dumping issues, placing domestic manufacturers at a disadvantage.

The company said the government should consider initiating anti-dumping investigation to get industry some anti-dumping relief. “Such measures will help to determine the right value of the product as per its quality and ensure fair application of import duties, fostering healthy competition and safeguarding consumer interests,” he added.

Replacing the Khaitans, the Burman family, promoters of Dabur India, in July last year reclassified itself as the promoters of Eveready Industries following the completion of the open offer in June. The company appointed Anand Chand Burman, former Dabur chairman, as its chairman.

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