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Roca Parryware is eyeing 20-25% revenue growth this year: K.E. Ranganathan

Shrugging off the disruptions of last year, businesses and agencies are looking for a strong revival in 2021. Adgully – as part of our annual TRENDING NOW endeavour – has been presenting the strategies and views of a cross-section of industry leaders as they go about reclaiming lost time and market opportunities and build for a stronger future, armed with the lessons of 2020.

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Parryware has introduced game-changing bathroom solutions and progressive technology in India. The brand has refreshed itself with ‘Always in fashion' positioning  to further reiterate its commitment of offering contemporary and unique designs including colors, trendy shapes, advanced technology that matches the imagination and lifestyle of the young, discerning Indian customer.

Earlier this year, dentsu X India, the integrated media specialist from the house of dentsu international, was assigned the media account for Roca Bathroom Products Pvt Ltd, also referred to as RBPPL or Roca Parryware.

In conversation with Adgully, K.E. Ranganathan, Managing Director, Roca Parryware, speaks about the company’s performance during the pandemic period, the growth factors, changes in customer preference when it comes to bathroom/ sanitaryware products, as well as the key learnings from 2020. 

How is 2021 looking for your business after a tough 2020?

The year 2021 has begun on a good note for our company Roca Parryware. Since January 2021, we prepared well – both on the manufacturing front and the market front – to meet increasing demand for our products offered across our 5 popular brands – Armani Roca, Laufen, Roca, Parryware and Johnson Pedder.

We got back to healthy double digit revenue growth since October 2020 through several customer centric actions like launching of new products, expanding network at retailer level, big thrust on the loyalty program for our trade partners, continuous excitement and support to our plumbing technicians, creation of digital market place through the Parryware Safebuy platform and opening of new showrooms.

On the back-end, we ensure COVID-19 preventive measures across our 8 factories to produce high quality products at good pace to meet increasing demand.

With these measures, we see the year 2021 to be very encouraging on revenue front, with minimum 20-25% growth over year 2020 (which was affected by COVID-19).

We have planned for aggressive growth in revenue to come from Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities by expanding our footprint and launching affordable products.

On the exports front, we see a big surge in demand from countries like the US, Australia and Europe. Our exports to these countries are growing at a good speed.

Looking at the peaking demand, we have started investing in Capex at our factories to further expand our capacities for Sanware, Faucets and Plastic products. We are also stepping up our Marketing Investments in the form of mass media campaigns and showrooms. 

What are the consumer sentiments today when it comes to the bathroom/ sanitaryware industry?

Given the pandemic, many consumers have found a new appreciation for their home, especially the bathroom space, and are even more interested than ever in making enhancements to their space. With this change in inclination towards bathroom space as part of opulent home decor, we have observed consumer-buying sentiments towards products that minimise human touch and ones that are equipped with sensor technologies like touchless sensor taps or products that effectively prevent germ buildup.

In today’s time, consumers are concerned about water conservation and are very clear about their hygiene aspects. Additionally, with the increase in disposable incomes, the middle and upper classes are willing to spend more on stylish and attractive bathroom space, irrespective of a small or a big-sized washroom. They are keen to have a Bluetooth shower so that they can listen to songs while taking a hot shower, long soak in the tub, or a pampering session at the vanity that offered the ultimate escape in a year of going nowhere. Hence, it has become crucial for bathroom manufacturers to provide innovative, water-saving, safe, quality-driven as well as technologically advanced solutions to address hygiene-conscious customers. 

What have been the key learnings from 2020? 

When 2020 began, no one imagined a black swan event of a magnitude of COVID-19 that would affect every single person in the world. The ensuing chaos posed a massive challenge for companies, testing their mettle to the core. Organisations that successfully tap the advantages of a digital-first world will be able to pave their way swiftly.

We learned how to be agile to respond strategically, which led to cost advantages.

The pandemic has reiterated that paying attention and managing at the micro-level pays macro dividends as it did not give us a choice but to accept, and then adapt.

One needs to embrace difficult situations to increase resilience and well-being. 

The ‘new normal’ in terms of buying experience and play of digital across all business processes is another key learning.

Cash remained the King during these difficult times and taught us how to manage CASH all the time to stay alive and look for healthy future. We learnt how to operate at optimum inventory and debtors. 

How do you see the future outlook for the bathroom and sanitaryware industry?

Long term prospects of bathroom products industry looks intact, given the low level of toilet penetration in India.

However there will be consolidation taking place post impact of COVID-19 as smaller players will sell-out due to survival issues.

The year 2021 will see a decent 10% growth for the industry, subject to COVID 2.0 related restrictions.

Touch-free and tech-driven bathrooms have become more accessible than in the past and the industry is switching to offer innovative solutions to provide maximum safety in public/ private convenience spaces. Individuals are now opting for stylish homes and modern bathrooms that are beyond functionality and have a wellness quotient attached to space.

With the advent of customizable toilet functions, a furniture unit that can be connected to the mobile phone, or a mirror with touchless technology, individuals are choosing from a whole array of shapes, finishes, and textures, to an extra-added safety feature.

While we are boosting our in-shop presence, we are definitely creating better avenues for touch-less shopping as digital adoption is here to stay. Moreover, shifting preference towards smart homes in the urban cities due to the increasing importance of proper sanitation and convenience is expected to propel the installation of new smart toilets in the residential and commercial sectors.

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