“The Year 2018 Will be Undeniably an Action Packed Year”

March, 12, 2018

Acer India has been very much in the news this year because of its aggression. The company quickly grab larger market hold with its well-planned channel strategy.The brand has invested lot on creating consumer awareness and creating much more exclusive stores across India. With a complete high quality product offerings, they expect lot more in this New Year. Mr. Chandrahas Panigrahi, CMO and Consumer Business Head, Acer India, the man behind these all plans, shares his entire game plan with DT for year 2018.

DT: What have been the crucial milestones of your company during year 2017?

Mr. Chandrahas: Year 2017 has been another great year for Acer on the back of a successful 2016. We introduced many of our marquee products under our Gaming, Hybrids, and 2 in 1s segments. Acer Predator Helios 300 received an overwhelming response from the gaming community and during the sale it was sold out within minutes. We also launched series of gaming products, right form budget ones to high end. We also announced the Asia’s biggest DOTA 2 tournament, Predator League 2018. We also had a very strong sales quarter in Q3 2017 where we broke several records and revenue targets. As we enter 2018 we see huge excitement in our new range on products catering from entry to premium as well as full assortment of gaming products including the insanely powerful Predator 21X

DT: What is your channel strength currently in India? How do you plan to boost channel strength in year 2018?

Mr. Chandrahas: We have 5000+ partners, which include exclusive stores as well as multi-brand outlets and this phenomenal growth and channel base is due to our very channel friendly policies and initiatives. To enhance our channel strength we are aggressively strengthening our partnership with the channel community in tier 2, 3 and 4 cities. Our association with our channel partners has always been extremely rewarding, and further we believe in strengthening and supporting our partners by introducing exciting creative marketing promotion for both the channel partners and end users. We are working closely with partners on financing their purchase, demo programs for high-end models, schemes to focus on portfolio to help them increase average selling price, training to ISPs through mobile app etc.

DT: How do you provide excellent service support to your loyal customers?

Mr. Chandrahas: Acer has taken multiple initiatives in order to provide best services to customers. Our customer service initiatives includes 24/7 support through online technical portal,  diagnostic call centres, providing standby unit to customers in case of delay, on-site PAN India support, Priority channel Queue for Key customers at Call Centre for quick access and resolution. We are constantly working towards making our services better and in 2018 one of goals is to sustain this initiatives and introduce simple and quick service solutions for our customers. We plan to invest in our exclusive stores in Tier II and III cities. We have already introduced almost 100 stores in the country and in 2018, we will continue expanding our presence in all across India.

DT: What will be your key Go-To-Market Strategy for year 2018?

Mr. Chandrahas: We are strengthening our partnership as well as customer outreach with intensive engagement programs. We have forged strong partnerships with all the large format retail stores and going forward we are also aiming at increase Acer’s brand presence in tier II and III locations. Our robust distribution network comprises Acer Malls, Acer Points, large format retailers and mulit-brand outlets; we are working towards expand it even further. To keep pace with the dramatic changes in the IT landscape, we have been investing significantly in training, in-store merchandising with apt showcase/display of new high-end models, sales enablement, schemes and easy finance options.

DT: What all products you will be launching in year 2018? Which will be your key target verticals?

Mr. Chandrahas: Maintain momentum and build on the core strengths on back of a successful year we plan continuing our efforts to bring something innovative to our customers in 2018. We unveiled upgraded models under the Swift, Predator, Nitro and Switch series this year. Beside this, IoT and VR will be a big focus globally for Acer and we will be seeing these products coming to India. With government moving to a market place like model and encouraging adoption of technology at all levels, we expect 2018 to be an even better year. In corporate segment, as well we will be looking to go deeper and consolidate our position as one of market leaders in the PC and technology space. The year 2018 will be undeniably an action packed year with the advent of innovations in both hardware and software space.

DT: Please share your current revenue and market growth rate. What is target for year 2018?

Mr. Chandrahas: We are one of the fastest growing PC brand in India and a leader in gaming PCs in a short span. Our target is to bring in best of innovations to Indian PC market in all segments including gaming, all in ones, convertibles, projectors, monitors etc. We believe that the growing opportunities in the market will help us achieve our target in 2018.

DT: How do you support Government of India's 'Make-in-India' program?

Mr. Chandrahas: Acer thoroughly supports Government of India’s initiative for 'Make-in-India' and 'Digital India' programs. We have been committed to Make-in-India long before it became a trend and talking point with our manufacturing hub in Pondicherry, which has made India the manufacturing hub for Southeast Asia for Acer. To amplify the Make in India initiative we have introduced PMA compliant machines on GeM (Government e-Marketplace). With the launch of PMA compliant computers Acer is ramping up manufacturing and local sourcing of advanced components and aggressively working to create more jobs for youth.

DT: How GST changed your business affair in year 2017?

Mr. Chandrahas: GST had a positive impact on our business. It gave a boost to digitalization, which had a major impact on PC sales as traders and business houses needed a PC to ensure GST compliance. We introduced GST ready range of desktops, laptops and AIOs with pre-loaded Tally ERP software, which enabled Smooth transitions for traders and businesses. Beside this, we also rolled out GST programs for retailers and consumers during the transition period. To adopt this biggest tax reforms we trained our teams and braced our IT infrastructure for smoother transition.

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