An 8-percent price rationalization, upgrades in the direct-cool
segment, and lower price points in the frost-free segment, have helped India's refrigerator segment record 8-9 percent growth in 2002. Total industry volume has been placed at around 3 million, against 2.6 million last year. The industry had closed 2001 with a 4-percent decline. However, industry majors say growth this year was lower than the targeted 20 percent, resulting in high inventory levels.
Industry majors brought in a slew of models targeting various price points, both in the direct cool and the frost free segment.
Consequently, the direct-cool segment, which constitutes roughly 80 percent of the total market, saw upgrades from the conventional 165-L category to the 200-300 L range. Replacement buying constituted around 35 percent of the total sales this
year. Also, fierce competition resulted in lower entry level prices in the frost-free segment, which recorded better volumes. (The Economic Times)
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