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Birla Electricals mulls plant in H.P.

Our Bureau

HYDERABAD, Oct. 20

BIRLA Electricals Ltd (BEL) is establishing an assembly line plant at Paonta Sahib in Himachal Pradesh for assembling De'Longhi range of products and other home appliances.

The company will be investing Rs 25 crore over a period of two years on the plant that will start operations from June, next year.

BEL, belonging to the Rs 800-crore Yash Birla group, has entered into collaboration with the Italian white goods major, De'Longhi S.p.A in 1999 to market a range of consumer durables and home appliances in India.

BEL has launched Birla Lifestyle products, a new range of home appliances, here on Sunday.

Mr Shailesh Agarwal, BEL Vice-President (Marketing), told newspersons that Birla Lifestyle products would be launched in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Rajasthan next month. The products, aimed at the middle class and upper middle class consumers, were already available in most parts of North India.

He said that the turnover of BEL, which stood at Rs 7 crore last fiscal, was projected to go up to Rs 20 crore during the current fiscal and to Rs 32 crore in 2003-04.

The Rs 3,000-crore home appliances market in the country was growing at a rate of 10 to 15 per cent per annum but the unbranded segment account for nearly 65 per cent of this business.

Mr Agarwal said that BEL was aspiring to have an edge over the existing competitive brands by providing high quality products.

By 2004, the company intended to have a network of 130 distributors and 10,000 retailers in the country.

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