It’s raining competition in water purifiers market
Apr 13 2010 , New Delhi
The estimated Rs 1,200 crore plus water purifier market, said to be growing at approximately 20 per cent annually, has seen an upsurge in interest level among big corporate groups. The Tatas entered the fray late last year. Hindustan Unilever and Kent are the other big players in the market dominated by Eureka Forbes’ Aquaguard.
Hitech Plast & Clear Plastics, an Asian Paints associate firm, announced the launch of an instant purifier, a 650 ml personal water bottle. Priced at Rs 250 in urban markets and Rs 100 in the rural areas, the product, the firm claimed, has a capacity to purify 800-1,000 litres of water in one year.
“We have just started rolling out the product with Reliance Value Format and Religare Wellness. They should be available in a week's time. At the same time, we are looking at additional selling channels like the Indian Naval Canteen Services,” Ashok Goel, MD, HitechPlast & Clear Plastic said.
Eureka Forbes is also in the process of launching a low-cost product soon. Marzin Shroff, COO, direct sales, Eureka Forbes, said, “I do not think that Rs 1,000 or Rs 1,500 is a low price band as many people in the bottom of the pyramid might not be able to afford even this price. We are presently working on a product to provide safe drinking water to all Indians and expect to launch it in a few months. It would be the lowest product in terms of cost of per litre of water and would change the market dynamics." The medium- to high-end water purifiers are priced in the Rs 7,990 to Rs 19,990 range. The entry-level price range is Rs 999 to Rs 2,050.
Kent RO Systems last month launched an entry-level RO purifier, ‘Kent Gold Optima’, priced at Rs 1,250. Tata Chemicals launched ‘Swach’ at Rs 999. HUL, which forayed into the market with ‘Pureit’.
Brand strategist Harish Bijoor said, “Water purifiers started at the top of the pyramid but soon the market got saturated and the companies moved to the middle and lower end.”
Sabaleel Nandi, head, water purifier business, Tata Chemicals, said, "The penetration of water purifier is only 6 per cent in urban India and 1 per cent in rural India. Being the lowest priced product, Tata Swach, which has been launched only in rural Maharashtra, would be targeting the lower end of the population.