South Korea’s Daewoo has decided its re-enter the Indian market with a strategic partnership with Gurugram-based Kelwon Electronics and Appliances.
The latter, which is the exclusive licensee for the Daewoo brand in India, showcased a range of consumer electronics and automotive aftermarket products, including lead-acid batteries for two- and four-wheelers, Daewoo-branded lubricants, as well as electric bicycles in New Delhi.
Kelwon Electronics and Appliances will launch and commence retailing these products in January 2024. The company is targeting setting up a network of 150 distributors, reaching out to 4,000–5,000 retail outlets across the consumer electronics and automotive spare part retail segments before the launch of the products.
Kelwon Electronics and Appliances plans to invest Rs 300 crore over the next three years, majorly into marketing, branding, and network establishment to distribute and retail these products, and foresees a revenue potential of Rs 110 crore from the automotive product lines in the first year of operations.
“We will channelise our initial efforts to resurrect and establish the Daewoo brand, which has a strong legacy in India. We will target to double our revenues every year, and will look to reach Rs 300 crore turnover, particularly in the automotive product line, in the next three years,” said HS Bhatia, Managing Director, Kelwon Electronics and Appliances.
The company says the rapid growth in the Indian market, which is poised to become the third-largest economy in the world, is the key driving force behind getting the Daewoo brand in the country, and will explore all diversification options, including venturing into the e-mobility segment with Daewoo’s electric bicycles, scooters and motorcycles.
“We are presently establishing the brand and network in India, and while we will start off with the power energy products—batteries and inverters—we will simultaneously work on the electric bicycle segment and bring those products by mid-CY2024,” Bhatia said.
While Kelwon is optimistic about venturing into the electric two-wheeler (scooter and motorcycle) segment with Daewoo’s technology already available in markets like China, it does not intend to do so at least in the next 12 months.
“We are awaiting a solid stand from the government in terms of the subsidies for the electric two-wheeler segment and hope to get things clarified during this timeframe. Once that is done, we will have made our brand resurgence by virtue of the other product categories. Therefore, we do not see ourselves foraying into the e-2W segment at least in the next 12 months. We will adopt a slow-and-steady approach,” Bhatia revealed.
While Kelwon Electronics and Appliances will outsource the manufacturing of the Daewoo-branded products it plans to introduce in the Indian automotive aftermarket, the company says the strategic tie-up opens immense opportunities in the EV domain.
“We could be looking at a locally developed and manufactured product with batteries sourced from Korea. We could also leverage existing EV OEMs’ capacities in India to get our e-2Ws contract manufactured. There are immense possibilities going forward,” Bhatia optimistically said.