Published On : Fri, Oct 19th, 2012

After Reliance Digitial, CROMA to enter Nagpur

Infiniti Retail, with its Croma brand of stores, is eyeing after-sales service as the next big business opportunity in consumer durables retail. With plans of differentiating itself from other durables retailers, after-sales service could emerge as a ‘profit’ centre for the Tata Sons subsidiary. It could look at repairing durables across products and brands, not necessarily bought from the Croma stores.

Currently the Croma Care Centres are restricted to servicing and repairing private labels and products bought from the Croma stores, but it could look at including durables in general.

Even its call centres, which cater to after-sales services, have been receiving requests to service other products and brands.

Ajit Joshi, CEO and MD, Infiniti Retail said, “There are plans on the drawing board to make after-sales service a profit centre, as loyalties get built and the customer comes back to our stores.”

In fact, Croma is planning to treat after-sales service as a ‘differentiator’ in the consumer durable retail category. It has already stepped up investments from Rs 7 crore to Rs 15 crore in its after-sales services for the existing 11 Croma Care centres.

“We would set up Croma Care Centres in all the new cities that we enter,” added Joshi. Croma would soon be entering tier 2 cities such as Nasik and Nagpur. It has been slowly expanding its private labels with the latest introduction Croma Tablets priced at Rs 5,999.

“We did have tablets before, but now with our special relationship with players such as Microsoft and Intel, we have launched affordable tablets. Today, private labels contribute Rs 200 crore and in the past year, we have also been providing after-sales services for the products,’’ said Joshi.

“Today almost 70 per cent of our private label products are manufactured in India unlike in the past when the majority of the products were imported. Attractive pricing is what makes consumers choose private labels over established brands,” he said.