We see consolidation in sleep solutions: Mohanraj Jagannivasan
Established in the 1960s, Duroflex has evolved into a sleep solutions company with a national footprint, cutting edge products, many exclusive technologies and fully backward integrated manufacturing facilities.
Riding on Team India’s scintillating performance during the ongoing ICC World Cup, where Duroflex brand ambassador Virat Kohli has opted for the Back Magic mattress in all the hotels that he stays in, Duroflex has seen increased traction.
In an exclusive interview with Adgully, Mohanraj Jagannivasan, CEO, Duroflex, speaks about the company’s journey and achievements so far, the marketing strategies, campaign involving Virat Kohli, future plan, and much more.
Could you take us through the inception, growth and success of Duroflex?
It is always day one at Duroflex for everyone; the journey for me personally has been an exciting one. I feel privileged to be part of Duroflex, which has a great mix of 60 years of legacy practices and new age thought process.
"Over the years, we have built a strong and loyal consumer base and to ensure that we continue to deliver on our commitments, when the world was shutting down during COVID, we invested on our brand and gained significant ground in the sleep solutions industry."
We are working towards redefining the meaning of quality sleep with state-of-the-art technology and six decades of expertise. We have distinguished ourselves as a leader in the industry with an innovative and cutting-edge range of products that is first of its kind in India. Our signature range – Duropedic is India’s No. 1 doctor recommended orthopedic mattress range. The brand is today synonymous with quality, innovation, and comfort. Our product portfolio is backed by strong technical know-how, modern equipment, and the ability to understand future needs.
The market is evolving and people are giving a lot of attention to sleep, influencers in India today talk a lot about sleep. Look at what we did with Virat Kohli, he called to ask if we could place the same mattress in all the hotels that Team india travels to, and we obliged. Such instances influence consumers and help us grow the category.
The market for sleep solutions like mattresses, pillows, etc., is quite large and largely unorganised. Amid tough competition, Duroflex has become a strong brand since it came into existence in the 1960s. What are the factors contributing to the success of the brand?
Our first and foremost value is consumer centricity. Health is a key pivot in our strategy and we want India to have great sleep and build great long-term health.
We do not see our product as mattresses and pillows, rather as solutions to a certain consumer need – be it our four signature ranges of mattresses, Wave Plus with its anti-snore mode, and our furniture with its ergonomic design for optimal support and comfort.
We have always strived for innovation, be it product or marketing. For example, we were the first ones to create a product like Neuma, which is India’s first firmness adjustable mattress. We always strive to give our consumers the best quality consistently.
What is the USP of Duroflex? How is it different from the other brands in the market?
If I had to name one quality that sets us apart from the competition, it would be our science and research backed products. Most of product ranges are backed by research bodies across the country and our focused consumer approach helps us here. For example, energise with copper-infused tech, Duropedic is India’s No. 1 doctor recommended orthopedic mattress range.
What are the marketing activities launched by Duroflex during 2023? How has the marketing strategy of Duroflex evolved over the years?
We have never called ourselves a mattress company, because we believe that we are not into the business of selling mattresses, rather we are here to help India sleep better and build great long term health.
This has been our consistent approach and we have always strived to make this message reach the audience loud and clear.
"This year, we have stepped up our game and owned the narrative of great health through sleep, which resonates with our consumers. For this, we have onboarded the most credible voice – Virat Kohli."
While Virat helps us drill down the message of “great sleep, great health”, we have done some very interesting work around World Sleep Day – we created India’s sleepiest page, held the first ever Mattress Exchange campaign across India, rolled out our latest campaign with Virat and launched our furniture campaign. It has been an exciting year for our marketing strategy.
Given the changes taking place in the retail industry amid pandemic times, how has the company dealt with it?
- By going D2C
- By focusing on retail experience with our Experience Centres
- By creating an omni-channel experience
- By focusing more on content creation to build and nurture a community
What are your observations on how online shopping trends have disrupted the offline retail sector?
I would not call it disrupt, rather I’d call it evolution. The creation of omnichannel experience of consumers has helped the offline business as well, because the consumers prefer to experience this product before buying even if they see it online. So, in a way online has aided discovery and awareness for offline.
How is Duroflex leveraging social media to market its products and services? Any special offers during the festive season?
"Social media has been an exciting space for us. Content is something that our teams focus on a lot – from creating India’s sleepiest page to our recent chatter about Virat using our product in all hotels throughout the ICC Cricket World Cup, we have upped our game on social media."
We have some very interesting campaigns coming up as well. We have seen some good follower growth happening across our handles and consumers are engaging more with our brand.
Where do you see the brand in the next five years? What are your future expansion plans?
We have large plans in the next few years. We see consolidation happening in this category and you will largely see 2-3 players dominate. We definitely want to be the brand that will dominate the consumer play in this category.
We have always been ahead of the curve and have done many industry-first initiatives, which we will continue to do. We have some exciting launches, which will redefine this category.
"We will continue to build our D2C focus and march towards being India’s first truly Omni brand in this space."
What are the main challenges faced by this industry and how do you tackle these stumbling blocks?
It is a low involvement category currently; consumers do not pay too much attention to what they sleep on, hence we are focusing on doing a lot of ground work through our partners and other channels to make this a high stake category for the consumer. We will continue our effort with Virat to make this an engaging category and a desirable brand.
Our focus on R&D will ensure that we come up with products which will change the way consumers look at this category.