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HMT Watches to get 700 crore revival budget

One of the oldest players in the watch industry HMT - a public sector company is expected to receive a renewal package from the government with the commencement of the next financial year.

As reported by media, S Paulraj, Managing Director, HMT Watches said, "We have already submitted a revival plan to the government and we expect to get the package by the beginning of FY'11. We then plan to strongly focus on marketing and brand-building of our watches."

The brand was the leader in the space one point of time, and it surely appears to be a step to regain the market. On the proposed plan of the brand, Adgully talked to Pranesh Misra, Chairman and MD, Brandscapes Worldwide, and on this he says, "I think the issue is because of its loss of activity, in last couple of decades it has fallen back in terms of it imagery as a brand. I believe, even Titan is facing the pressure as the international brands are coming into the market. In that context HMT is pretty much categorized as "yesterday trend'."

The brand will surely have to rebuild its brand, according to the present demands in the market. Misra, further suggests, "If they want to use the same brand name it will be a big challenge, if they want to use a new brand name may be that is possible. Then they may have to find a good rationale to launch a new brand of watches. But I think using HMT brand name will be quite a challenge."

HMT, the Public Sector Company is said to get a revival budget of around Rs 700-750 crore. On this, Misra strongly says, "Actually in my view, public sector should not remain into the consumer goods because they don't really have the attitude to change rapidly and sort of react and respond to the changing trend in a timely manner. So it is much better for public sectors to limit itself to core industry than to dabble in consumer goods. I think these Rs 700 crore should be better spent elsewhere."

One of the key focuses of the revival is going to be brand building, so other brands will definitely plan their strategy, accordingly.

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