Sydney-based Australian Bathroom and Sanitaryware major Claytan Group has decided to invest in a dealership model for further growth in India. According to Claytan’s country head for India I D Sharma (firstname.lastname@example.org), the company, till 30th of June, was operating under the franchise mode in India. “Now the company is planning to come in direct operations in India,” he said. The company started operations in India in 2013 by introducing its Caroma, Claytan and Silverdale brands.
Claytan has started appointing dealers in major cities across India. “We have appointed three dealers in Delhi and very soon we will be appointing the fourth,” Sharma shares. The dealers in Delhi are Perfecto, Variety Bath and Starmerc Infratech. “Starmerc, who was our franchisee earlier, is now of our leading dealer.” Jaipur-based Elegant Edge is Claytan’s dealer in Rajasthan, and one more is to be appointed shortly. The company is already represented in Mumbai, and an appointment will soon be made in Chandigarh. Other states targeted are Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. Speaking specifically about Rajasthan’s Ganganagar plan he said, “Given Ganganagar’s unique location, it borders districts in Punjab as well as Haryana, we consider it a different business region and see a lot of potential.”
Currently, the dealers have to place their orders directly on Claytan Australia and import. However, Claytan will establish its Indian operation in a few months. “India is a huge market for us and as we explore all possible opportunities to increase our distribution network, I feel it’s important that we have a base in the country,” Sharma avers.
Responding to why the company has taken so much time to mark its presence in the country, Sharma says Claytan has done the necessary groundwork. “Usually, global companies take some time to understand the market and are advised by business consulting firms to follow a particular business model before setting up shop,” he shared.
Claytan’s target customers are affluent customers, realtors, airports, hospitals, hospitality chains, etc, and the company has been successful in roping architects, plumbing contractors and other influencers, according to Sharma. “We have supplied our products to landmark projects including Westin Mumbai, Radha Regent Chennai, Machan Hotel & Resorts Lonavala, Aaman Hotels Delhi, Dharamshala Cricket Stadium and Saifai Cricket Stadium. Very recently, Caroma products have been granted approval for ITC Bhubneshwar.” The company manufactures sanitaryware for physically challenged people and is the main forte of the group. “Caroma’s products in this segment are unparallelled,” he said.
Sharma asserts that Claytan is going to be a long-term player in India. “We want to be a part of India growth story. Now that we have a few projects under our belt, we have approached the Government of India to partner with it for its railways, housing, and hospital and aviation projects.” He says that Claytan is among the few companies to have products for hospitals, and has supplied to Calicut’s 500-bed hospital developed by Kef Infra. All its products are star-rated and come with the WELS (water efficiency and labelling scheme) certification.
The company is positioning itself as a complete bathroom solutions provider. “We have entered into a joint venture with Italian tapware company Giulini and will also be launching Gentac range of eye washers, sensor taps, etc, in the Indian market,” Sharma says.