We aim to secure our position as India’s leading cookware brand: Sunil Agarwal

The Indian cookware industry was one amongst the very industries that maintained a positive growth rate during the covid 19 pandemic, witnessing a huge surge in its e-commerce portfolio.

The INR 2400 crore cookware industry in India generates nearly a quarter of its revenue from the kitchen tools and essentials segment, amounting to nearly INR 600 crore.

Manish Joshi from NewsBarons connects with Sunil Agarwal, Director, Vinod Cookware who informs ‘With a significant rise in online traders and soaring disposable incomes, the sky is the limit for the Indian retail industry’.

NB: What is the total business size of Vinod Cookware and how has been the company’s growth been in the last 5 years.

www.newsbarons.comSunil: The market share of Vinod Cookware has witnessed tremendous growth, driving revenues courtesy expansion into new segments and geographies. Targeting the regional market segment, coupled with a competitive product range, has resulted in Vinod Cookware occupying a large share of retail markets across major cities in India.

Over the last five years, we have seen consistent YOY growth of 10%. Currently, our turnover amounts to INR 200 crore. While we are continuing to set up new production facilities to increase output and meet the ever-increasing market demand, we’re serving our customers better with innovative products built for the contemporary Indian kitchen. Our products are distributed across the country and we aim to secure our position as India’s number one cookware brand.

Along with establishing a strong presence in India, we also export our products to countries like USA, UK, Kenya, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

Post COVID-19, we expect the retail industry to primarily focus on exploring the online mediums.

NB: What was the impact of the pandemic on your business.

Sunil: The COVID-19 pandemic gave rise to plenty of people opting to cook at home. The curiosity of experimenting with new recipes has led to people developing home cooking as a popular hobby. The shutting down of restaurants further presented an invaluable opportunity for home chefs to indulge in cooking and expand their business at the same time.

Parallelly, we have seen growth in the e-commerce business during the lockdown. It contributed to 20% of our turnover last year, as compared to 6-7% in the previous 2 years.

NB: What has been the demand growth across the offline and online platforms.

Sunil: Vinod Cookware has a large offline audience. While the current generation largely prefers to shop online, we are focusing on growing our online sales in alignment with offline sales. Brands need to stay relevant since consumers, as well as companies, are focusing more on online services. It’s essential to establish our presence in these online avenues as they are the future. Also, there is a shift in consumer preferences, wherein they opt for online shopping as one of the key mediums that bring comfort and convenience all with a single click.

We have achieved 30% of our sales from the online platforms.

When it comes to offline media, our region-wise contribution is North-40%, West-30%, South-20% and East-10%.

The online sales distribution is consistent at 30% across geographies. These statistics further indicate that our presence in southern India is better with the online platforms.

We seek to expand our presence in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as we want our products to reach even the smallest retail store.

NB: How does Tier II & III locations contribute to the overall business growth.

Sunil: When it comes to consumer preferences, not only the metro cities but Tier II and Tier III cities as well have displayed a strong propensity and affinity for online content. Vinod Cookware has the largest share of retail markets across major cities in India and has been targeting the regional market segment with competitive products.

We seek to expand our presence in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as we want our products to reach even the smallest retail store. For this, we are looking at a 2-point strategy wherein we will focus on product availability and product awareness. To connect with the audience on a deeper level, we will also aim to build a strong network with the dealers and distributors.

NB: What are your views on industry growth post covid 19.

Sunil: The rise of e-commerce, driven by demand factors, has seen phenomenal growth. Post COVID-19, we expect the retail industry to primarily focus on exploring the online mediums and adapt to the drastic change in the consumer behavior pattern. From the spike in sales, it’s safe to say that the cookware industry is one of the very few industries that has benefited from the restrictions imposed during the pandemic and emerged undamaged.