Philips eyes India as manufacturing hub

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Dutch consumer electronics giant Philips, which last year moved its domestic appliances headquarters to China, is set to make India its global hub for manufacturing and innovation for its kitchen appliances division. This could happen in the next couple of years.

The company, which acquired the Chennai-based Maya Appliances — maker of Preethi-branded mixer grinders early last year — is planning to set up an integrated facility in Chennai to manufacture its range of small appliances, including mixer grinders, induction stoves, electric cookers, juicers and food processors.

Saying it will be a little too premature to talk about the investment plans, Vijay Srinivasan, managing director, Maya Appliances, hinted that to set up one manufacturing unit in this segment would require anywhere between Rs 300 million and Rs 500 million. “And, hence an integrated unit may require surely upwards of Rs 1 billion,” he said.

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According to him, following the acquisition last year, the process of integration of the two companies — in terms of technology collaboration and certain back-end operations — is completed. However, as already decided, Preethi will continue to remain a wholly-owned subsidiary of Philips.

Though Philips has not started manufacturing its product range at Preethi’s facilities as yet, Srinivasan has not ruled out the possibility of that in the near future.

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