Issue 73 - 28th June, 2012

Timing it right!
Dutch watch phone maker Burg recently launched its watch phones in India. Connect spoke to Mr. Ashwini Kedia, CEO, Burg India regarding the new business venture.

When did Burg decide to come to India? How and where does India figure on the global strategy of Burg?

Burg decided to come to India after the Canton fair in China last year. The fair was a big success on global platform for Burg and they received many enquiries for bringing them to India.
India is a very new market for Burg and we realize the potential for the brand in India. The outlook for India is one of ‘long term’ and it features on our preferred countries list.
What are the products being launched in India?
At present we have launched 4 models of watch phones - Burg 9, Burg10, Burg12 and Burg13. They are priced in the range of INR 9,000 to 24,000. The Burg 11 which was recently launched in CES show in Las Vegas will be launched in India soon. Also, we have various funky accessories like Candy Bluetooths, Neon Bluetooths, Watchbands, Lanyards, Car Chargers and Adapters.
What are the expectations from the India market?
As it is a fashion concept, Burg is setting its target on a very reasonable level for the first two years. According to BURG, products are fashion luxury elements which have a niche market and are not designed to replace our regular phones. In five years time they really believe India will be one of the highest sellers for them after countries like Italy and America.
What is the size and nature of the team in India?
KG Retail Ventures Pvt Ltd, based in Kolkata with 3 young promoters namely Ashwini Kedia, Rohit Kedia and Anurag Garodia are the master franchise and distributors for all Burg products in India. We have appointed a sub –distributor for Delhi, NCR region- Jva Retail Sales Pvt Ltd. Currently for the first two months, we want to concentrate on our stores in Kolkata, Guwahati, Delhi, Gurgaon and Noida and then gradually move ahead with opening Burg stores in other locations like Jaipur, Mumbai, Ahmedabad etc.
How has the response been to the launch of the stores and the Indian experience of Burg?
The initial response has been stupendous. People are really flowing into the stores as it is a new product and new brand. Lots of people are interested to buy this fashion concept but some are waiting for some occasion like marriage/birthdays/anniversaries etc to grab it. The first stand alone retail store opened in Kolkata on 10 April 2012 and had sold 600 units by the end of the month.
What are your future plans?
As mentioned earlier, Burg stores /kiosks and shop in shop models will come up all across the country but gradually. We are in the process of identifying the right channel partners and distributors all across the country. Plans are also underway to promote Golf, Tennis and Table Tennis tournaments as well as sponsoring Formula 1, national-level marathons and cycling events. Plans are already afoot to endorse an international tennis ace and the company aims to promote a tennis tournament in Delhi in October 2012. Beginning the fiscal year 2012-13, there are plans to promote many such tournaments in the years to come. The company is also in talks with major telecom operators Airtel, Vodafone and other telecom service providers for marketing tie-ups.
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