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Wipro plans lighting unit in Himachal

Vishwanath Kulkarni

Consumer care, lighting biz revenue up 27 pc in '05-06

Bangalore, April 19

Wipro Ltd plans to set up a lighting unit at Baddi in Himachal Pradesh this year to manufacture bulbs and tubes.

Mr Vineet Agrawal, President of Wipro's Consumer Care and Lighting Division, told Business Line that Baddi would be the company's third lighting unit after Waluj and Mysore. However, he declined to spell out the investment details.

Despite setting up a new unit, the company would continue its tie-ups with dedicated vendors, Mr Agrawal said.

Key driver

It has 12 dedicated vendors spread across who manufacture luminaries for the company for whom Wipro provides tooling, specifications apart from maintaining quality control.

He said the lighting division was one of the key drivers of Wipro's consumer care business and grew at around 31 per cent during financial year 2006.

Revenues from consumer care and lighting business grew by 27 per cent year on year and stood at Rs 601 crore in fiscal 2006. "The growth was broad-based across all our product lines," Mr Agrawal said, adding that his division expects to sustain the growth during the current year with the economy set to do well.

Golden run

For the fourth quarter of 2005-06, the consumer care division recorded revenues of Rs 166 crore, a 35 per cent growth over the corresponding previous quarter.

"Wipro's consumer care business had a golden run in the past three years as we doubled our revenues from Rs 300 crore to Rs 601 crore by growing much ahead of the industry, which is growing at around 10 per cent a year," Mr Agrawal said.

"This is primarily because all our product lines have done well including the recently launched wellness products such as honey among others," he said.

Wipro's soap brands like Santoor grew by 19 per cent, while Chandrika grew by 18 per cent. Glucovita rose 19 per cent while furniture business grew by over 200 per cent.

Further, Mr Agrawal said the company was contemplating some new product lines, which he declined to detail. "We may also come out with variations of our existing product lines," he said, adding the company is also on the lookout for acquisitions.

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