The heavy appliances sector will take a massive beating due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown and the muted sales preceding it, a top official of Godrej Appliances said on Sunday. Even after the curbs are lifted, social distancing norms and an overall fear of the pandemic may keep people away
from the stores for some time, he said.

“The heavy appliances industry will be impacted by a significant loss of up to 60 percent in March and almost 100 percent in April. These two months put together contribute close to 25 percent of the annual revenue,” Godrej Appliances Business Head and EVP Kamal Nandi told PTI.

The demand for products such as ACs, refrigerators and air coolers are usually high during this period, he said.

The Indian appliance and consumer electronics (ACE) market was at Rs. 76,400 crore in 2019, according to a research report.

The economic uncertainty will also play a role in consumer sentiment, bringing about a change in investment priorities, Nandi said.

Asked about preparations post the lockdown, he said, “Both the company and our trade partners are adequately stocked to meet any immediate surge in demand. We are also in constant touch with our vendors.”

Relaxation for economic activities from April 20 is expected to help, Nandi said. “Our own production units are well geared to start functioning as per the government directives on social distancing and limited manpower,” the official said.

Nandi also said while there will be a dent in sales across channels, the online platform is likely to have a lower impact.

“We are already partnering with key online players and foresee more integration of offline and online trade in the times to come and are preparing for the same,” he said.

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