Lanka bets on growing Indian market
Noritake Lanka Porcelain is expanding its new retail network in
India by opening more outlets in key metros with the aim of penetrating
the huge and growing market on the sub-continent.
now on the verge of opening our second show room in Chennai. Construction
was started by our exclusive distributor with the guidance of Noritake,”
declared Nimal Perera, Director and General Manager of Noritake
company’s first showroom in India, opened in August 2004 in
the Defence Colony, an affluent suburb in the capital New Delhi,
has become modestly profitable after just one year. Perera said
the response was good with foreigners, especially diplomats, being
keen buyers of Noritake tableware.
Indian showrooms would ensure speedy delivery of products to Indian
customers which previously took longer because of shipping and air
Noritake Lanka Porcelain plans to open the Chennai showroom in January
or February, a third in Hyderabad and a fourth planned for Mumbai
later on. The company is also aiming at the market for tableware
in Indian hotels.
we’re concentrating on developing hotel ware and through our
distributor we’re trying to approach five-star hotels in India,”
said Perera. Perera said the Noritake brand was already well established
in India and that the signing of the South Asian free trade agreement
four years ago helped open up the Indian market by progressively
lowering import duty rates on ceramic products to zero from almost
35 percent basic duty previously. Noritake Lanka employs 1,200 workers
at its factory in Matale, the largest in the Noritake group. The
firm exports over 80 percent of its output of a million pieces of
tableware a month. These comprise of domestic tableware, standard
airline tableware and hotel and restaurant tableware.
recently began manufacturing new product lines such as fine casual
china and airline porcelain ware, as well as freezer proof and microwave-safe
casual gourmet ware. The Matale factory exports about 9,000 fine
china dinner sets of 91 pieces to the global market each month.
firm’s product compete with those of industry leaders like
Lenox of the US, Wedgwood and Royal Doulton of the UK and Villeroy
& Boch of Luxembourg. Over the past 30 years, Noritake Lanka
Porcelain has expanded in four stages with a total investment of
US$ 10 million.