2016-09-26
Hella India to enter automotive battery aftermarket soon
The company hopes to launch its battery business across the country by June 2016

Hella India Lighting, the Indian arm of German automotive lighting major, is all set to diversify into automotive battery segment as well. 

The company hopes to launch its battery business across the country by June 2016. It has already started pre-sales and pilot market activities at three Locations and hope to complete Program definition in 3 months. 

"We will be launching a wide variety for most make and model being sold in India in both 4- wheeler and 2-wheeler segment," said Ramashankar Pandey, managing director, Hella India lighting. "We will enter the commercial vehicle space as well in the second phase," he informed 

Initially, the battery will only be available with existing retail channel of Hella in independent aftermarket. 

Along with supplying standalone batteries, Hella will also supply battery testers, battery Charges, dashboard battery voltage Indicators , online application chart and an online warranty registration system as a package as well. 

Talking about the idea behind entering battery segment, Pandey said that Hella India Lighting wants to be present in all product segment which fall in the 'Quick Fit' Category. "These products are defined as those which can be fitted in 60-90 minutes on the vehicle in an independent multibrand Hella authorised garage. Battery forms an integral part of that basket.". 

Hella Lighting is already present with its batteries in other countries, a few of which are China, Spain, Singapore, Germany. 

Hella India Lighting, apart from automotive lighting, is also present in aftermarket in electrical, thermal, coolants, condensers, radiator. "We will continue to expand our product range in this direction to support needs of our car & Truck drivers under one umbrella," said Pandey 

He informed that the batteries will be manufactured in India by a third party, as per Hella's global policy of supply chain network. The company did not disclose the investment that was put into the battery unit in India. 

"We expect that within 18 months from the launch, battery business should contribute in double digits to the overall revenue," said Pandey. Hella India lighting's revenue stood at nearly Rs 116 crore in FY 2014-15. 

Hella India Lighting has nearly 12,000 retailers across in India, but will start the supply of the battery from around 5,000 retailers and expand the base gradually. The company hopes to sell nearly 10,000 units a month. 

The company claimed that at present it has a customer base of 10 million for its other automotive products and it will target this base to grow its battery business as well.

(This news story is from The Economic Times)