Recovering from the double impact of demonetization and GST implementation, FMCG companies and consumer durables firms are pining hopes on 2018 that improved market sentiments will bring them back to the growth path. With the streamlining of the process after GST implementation behind them, the companies feel that prospects of good economic growth coupled with a revival in demand and consumption will help them overcome the hit they took on volumes and profits in 2017. Interestingly, these firms believe the demand should be evenly distributed to urban and rural markets.

Sony India Head of Sales Satish Padmanabhan said the industry is already seeing “positive comeback signs post the implementation of GST and expect 2018 to only be better”.

“2017 was an eventful year for the broader Indian economy, our industry and our business. We went through some ups and downs given the two major reforms of demonetization and GST during the year,” Whirlpool of India Managing Director Sunil D Souza said.

With the hurdles now history, the companies, specially electronic goods and appliances makers are gearing up to bring innovative products to woo consumers to showrooms in 2018. “In 2018, we will continue to bring industry first innovations for Indian consumers with an exciting lineup of future-ready products,” Samsung India VP Consumer Electronics Business Rajeev Bhutani said.

Samsung will kick-start 2018 with the world’s first innovation in the AC segment that would take the consumer convenience and comfort to the next level, he claimed. Likewise, Padmanabhan said Sony India would also continue to roll out “technologically advanced products across categories in the future and keep our customers engaged with Sony products”.

Panasonic India is also not lagging behind in its plans for new products with a major transition in portfolio and positioning in the offing. “We will strengthen as a comprehensive consumer electronics maker to offer solutions that fulfils the wishes of customers, while improving our individual products,” Panasonic India and South Asia President and CEO Manish Sharma said.

When contacted, a spokesperson for LG India said, “Product leadership is the key and we will continue bringing newer technologies based on Indian consumer insights.”

With the government pushing for domestic manufacturing, Sharma, who is also President of Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association (CEAMA) said the industry expects ratio of local manufacturing to increase going forward. “The industry acknowledges the pro-industry reforms undertaken by government and is looking forward to the Phased Manufacturing Program (PMP) policy in 2018 which in turn will boost indigenous manufacturing,” he said. – The Hindu Business Line