“We want Blu to become a premium brand in India”

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Bluemax Imppex, based in Hyderabad, was incepted in 2010 and their product portfolio includes feature phones and smart phones under their brand name Blu. They plan to launch their own brand LED TVs from 2016. Bluemax has tied up with a few top brands of China such as G-Five, FORME, B’Leephone and BeeFone for their supply all over South India. In an interaction with Mobility magazine, Raju Harwani, Director, Blumax Imppex shares his rapidly upcoming company’s plans and future outlook.

Mr Harwani states, “At present, feature phones and low-end Android smart phones are our main products focused mainly on B and C-Class cities. Right now feature phones form 80% and smart phones form 20% of the cell phones we sell every month. We launched our own brand Blu in 2014 and -C is the series (Blu-C). Right now we are marketing 30,000 smart phones per month and by April 2016 we want this figure to reach 150,000 mark. Our main areas of operation are Telangana, AP and then other South Indian states. Under the Make in India initiative, soon we will start our own assembling plant near Hyderabad for our products, which at present are being imported from abroad.”
Bluemax has around 45 distributors all over South for mobile handsets and others. They have after-sales-service presently available in all the major towns in AP and Telangana and 3 cities in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Mr Harwani adds, “All our products have better quality and affordable prices. They are tailor-made for the needs of the customers in the B & C class cities. Our own production plant (to be located near Hyderabad) that will be operational by Jan 2016 is expected to roll out our own brand India-made battery chargers, power banks and speakers. And by April 2016, we want to start our own brand LED TV production in our own plant with 10 production lines. Later, we will add 10 more lines to roll out Android smart phones under Make in India programme.”

Though presently, they are promoting their own brand, Bluemax is also into distribution although to a small scale. They distribute the brands like Hightech and Sansui. Mr Harwani clarifies, “We are open to distribute other brands besides our own brand if the terms and the brand are attractive.  New government’s initiatives like Make in India and Digital India are very forward-looking. But Make in India initiative needs continuous support from the government and time-to-time improvement to be successful. BIS, at present, adds only to more formalities and delays with little improvement on the quality side. For BIS to be successful, it should be implemented with careful monitoring. GST is of course a good policy, which once implemented, will benefit the industry a lot by eliminating the hassles of multiple taxation.”

Regarding challenges they are facing and their future plans, Mr Harwani shares, “One major irritant is the unscrupulous online retailing. This has become a major roadblock to the offline distributors and other partners. In fact, it is has a devastating effect on the survival of offline partners. For our brand, we sell our products at the same price—online or offline. This will assure our channel partners. We will be getting standard quality machines from China. In the coming 5 years, first, we want to strongly establish ourselves in the South, both in terms of brand strength and availability, then expand to other states. In future, we want to become one of the premium brands in India.”