Business Roundup #Week21

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HUL Eyes Asian Breakfast Options

Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) is mulling plans to launch traditional South Asian breakfast options, says a report.

India’s largest consumer goods firm will offer options such as khichdi, upma and pongal in a pronounced deviation from its earlier strategy to familiarise the Indian shopper with a more global menu, which included noodles and pre-mixed soups.

The new products, made of millets such as jowar and bajra under its Ayurveda brand Ayush, will mainly compete with MTR, Kellogg’s, PepsiCo and Marico in the 3,000-crore-rupee breakfast market, where consumers have been switching from western cereals to either traditional Indian or healthier alternatives.

Naaptol To Set Up Franchise Stores

Naaptol will set up a total of 150 franchise stores across the country over the next two financial years, reveals a report.

The company has already opened four stores through the franchisee route, including launching its first franchise store in Hyderabad recently, a senior company official said.

Naaptol has 13 fulfilment centres, he said.

Maruti To Boost AGS Technology Vehicles

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) is targeting sales of over 2 lakh units with auto gear shift (AGS) technology in the current fiscal, says a report.

The company, which introduced the first model with AGS technology five years ago, has already crossed the three lakh cumulative sales mark for such vehicles in the country.

Currently, MSI offers seven models with AGS – Alto K10, WagonR, Celerio, Swift, Ignis and Dzire. Earlier, MSI also introduced its compact SUV Vitara Brezza with AGS technology.

Samsung India Crosses Key Milestone

Samsung India has crossed the 50,000-crore-rupee sales milestone in 2016-17 as per the recently published company filings with the Registrar of Companies (RoC).

This consolidates the company’s position as the country’s largest pure-play consumer goods MNC.

The Korean major’s total income, including turnover and other income, grew by 15.5% to 55,511.9 crore rupees in FY 2017 from 48,053 crore rupees in the previous year despite Chinese companies making serious inroads into the Indian smartphone market.

Xiaomi Ready To Make TVs In India

Xiaomi is planning to start making television sets in India from the next quarter in partnership with Taiwanese contract manufacturer Foxconn instead of importing them, says a report.

The Chinese giant plans to dominate online sales in the upcoming festive season, three senior industry executives said.

The company, which is the biggest seller of smartphones in India, will initially assemble the TV sets while it builds a local component sourcing base.

WIN Launches Industrial Automation Unit

Wipro Infrastructure Engineering (WIN) has set up an industrial automation unit, according to a report.

The will help WIN, a part of Wipro, to gain a large share of the near $400 million manufacturing automation market for IT service players in India.

The overall Indian industrial automation market is $2 billion and out of that opportunity for system integrators such as Wipro, TCS, Infosys and HCL Technologies is approximately worth $ 400 million, which is seeing 17-18% growth. Industrial automated processes can be implemented in a facility with the likes of laboratory process automation from ICE process management.

Prices Of White Goods To Increase

Prices of refrigerators, air-conditioners and washing machines are set to go up 3-5% starting November, says a report.

This comes as white goods makers plan to pass on higher input costs to customers.

However, consumers will mostly feel the impact only from December, as retailers are saddled with unsold inventory from Diwali which they will first clear before sourcing fresh stock at higher prices. Input cost has gone up by 30-50% since the last price hike, which the industry effected in January.

Walmart To Stay Away From Food-Only Retailing

Walmart will stay away from applying to invest in a food-only retailing venture in the immediate future even after acquiring India’s largest ecommerce company Flipkart,, says a report.

This will allow the US giant to stock and sell groceries directly to consumers through the online platform.

Walmart would rather have a presence in the food products market through third-party retailers on Flipkart and escape the scrutiny and riders associated with foreign direct investment of up to 100% in food-only retailing ventures, according to sources.

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Babu Kalyanpur

Babu Kalyanpur, ( Consulting Editor) has rich experience in both sports and business journalism. Babu has led news desks in Pune and Bahrain and writes extensively on his passion, sports and business besides current affairs and matters of importance to Pune.

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