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    India an emerging market for branded furniture

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    The demand for branded furniture in the country is on the rise as a large number of Indian consumers today are largely opting for branded and ready-to-use furniture.

    According to experts monitoring the industry, though the market is yet to attract the mass segment of consumers, a good number of Indian families are looking to decorate their homes with branded furniture.

    Speaking to Indiaretailing, Manish V Parekh, director, , said, “With the increase in disposable incomes in the country, people today prefer to come to a readymade furniture shop, as against going to a carpenter. Besides, the quality and finish in the branded products is far better than the ones crafted by a carpenter.”

    Overwhelmed by the customers’ response, Nilkamal has planned to launch around 14 @home stores this fiscal.

    Lalit Kumar, CEO, , told Indiaretailing: “Today’s Indians are keen to experiment with the quality and the looks of the furniture that they use. For this, they are shifting more and more towards the ready-to-use segment, where there is a whole lot of variety in available designs.”

    Speaking about the brand positioning of Ebony Gautier store, Kumar added, “We have introduced and experimented with an international look and standard, which is our unique selling proposition (USP). We are receiving a good response from the consumers, and plan to expand our network.” The company has planed to open around four to five stores this year and expand to all major cities in the country.

    Commenting on the furniture retail market in India, Parekh said, “The market is slowly but surely moving towards the organised way. Today, a carpenter’s son is not keen to carry on his father’s business; rather, he will opt for opening a branded furniture shop. Besides, the display and the décor make the consumers feel good at the time of purchase.”

    Based on this concept of visual impact, Nilkamal has positioned its branded furniture store as @home. About the brand positioning of @home, Parekh said, “Our concept is based on consultative selling whereby a consumer can pick up the product from a virtual home displayed in the shop. We position ourselves as providers of home solutions under one roof.”

    Nilkamal today launched their 14th @home store in the country at Faridabad. Covering an area of around 16,000 square feet, the store houses décor products from numerous Indian and foreign brands that include , , , , , Identiti, and Spaces.

    The company will open its second store in Bengaluru next month and is planning to launch in tier II cities including Baroda, Rajkot and Ludhiana.

    – Satrajit Sen