Sunday, June 16, 2024

Bajaj Electricals embarks on ‘Bajaj 2.0’ eyeing faster growth

Bajaj Electricals Ltd, the first company of the Bajaj Group founded over 80 years ago, has embarked on ‘Bajaj 2.0’ to grow faster and become an aspirational brand, its Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer Anuj Poddar said in an interview.

“Now we should outperform ourselves. In Horizon one, that is from 2020 to 2023, we solved a lot of legacy issues, and put all the necessary building blocks in place. The more exciting journey starts now,” Mr. Poddar said.

“In Horizon two, that is from 2023 to 2026, we will chase progressive growth. We will hopefully grow much faster. Create a lot more value,“ he said.

He said Horizon three will be from 2026 and the goals will be announced later.

The company is being demerged into two entities to chase focused growth.

The consumer business which used to be one-third (in size) of the company prior to 2019, has now grown to 80% in size and the EPC business has been reduced to 20%.

“When I took over, the debt-equity ratio was about 2:1. We had ₹2,000 crore of debt and cash flow continued to be negative. As of March 22, we went debt-free,” he added.

“We are getting our consumer business back on track and focusing on profitability, improving cash flow. We have changed the whole culture of the workplace. We have now built a very strong team of capable and experienced professionals,” he said.

Three associate/subsidiary companies, namely Starlite Lighting Ltd., Hind Lamps Ltd., and Nirlep Appliances Ltd., have been consolidated into the consumer business.

“The products branded as Bajaj, Nirlep and Morphy Richards, have been designed well. Now we look at the pan-India geography. We are studying the South, an area where we have not been traditionally very present,” Mr. Poddar said.

In the next three years the company will focus a lot more on its consumer business to drive growth.

Speaking about the challenge about breathing new life into a legacy brand, Mr Poddar said, “Bajaj Electricals is not just another company. Therefore, while trying to reposition it, one had to be careful. This company was stuck in the past somewhere. It had not moved with the times.”

“The other bigger task was to change the organisation, its the people and culture. While preserving the legacy, we are building the future,” he added.

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