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Philips Lighting India’s Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Harshvardhan Chitale, talks on the lighting industry’s changing dynamics and opportunities going ahead.
What is the fascinating change in the world of lighting?
With LED revolutionizing the lighting sector, the fascinating change in the industry has been the transformation from a product-based solution to a comprehensive connected lighting system. LED lighting can connect and interact seamlessly with a building’s Ethernet or wireless network, allowing remote monitoring and operation through a network of smart controls, devices as well as apps. Each lighting point, fitted with sensors, becomes a pathway for information, delivering updates on everything from room occupancy to temperature and humidity. This has paved the way for a fully digitally lit world with connected LED lighting systems.
What is the market size of LED in India? Which factors are propelling the growth?
According to a report by the industry body ELCOMA (Electric Lamp and Component Manufacturers Association of India), the LED market in India will grow to Rs 21,600 crore by 2020, making it almost 60 percent of the total lighting industry (Rs 37,600 crore) in 2020.
This significant growth is driven by the ongoing government initiatives to promote LED lighting as well as changing consumer preferences from traditional and CFL lights to LED lights.
What’s your strategy to select the right franchise partner?
We have 4 Philips LightSTUDIOs and 170 plus Philips Light Lounges, managed by franchisees.
We select our franchise partners on the basis of four key criteria – their financial health, capability to invest in growing the business, good networking with architects & lighting customers, and strong market knowledge of the home improvement segment.
How do you maintain a long-standing relationship with your franchisees?
We work in close collaboration with our franchise partners to create a mutually successful business relationship. We consistently invest in their business through regular training on our products and latest technologies in the lighting sector. We also educate them in techniques on increasing their store footfalls, sales conversions, enabling them to grow their business.
What opportunities do you see going ahead?
The exponential growth in LED lighting offers tremendous opportunity for the lighting sector to expand volumes and presence across the country. Given its significant benefits, there is an increase in demand for LED across all verticals including homes, professional and public infrastructure lighting. We also expect to see a huge demand for connected lighting systems in homes and offices enabling energy efficiency.