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 user 2005-07-16 at 10:42:00 am Views: 75
  • #12193

    Epson to set-up 600 Genuine Cartridge stores
    The vendor targets to capture 70% market share over the next three years

    In a bid to counter the competition from compatible cartridges, Epson India is working on a novel initiative. It is setting up 600 Epson Genuine Cartridge Stores (EGCS) across India by December 2005. EGCS is being set-up in association with channel partners who do business directly with end-customers. 

    “We have identified over 600 reseller shops across the country, who can push Epson original inkjet cartridges in place of compatibles with the customers and help increase our market share. Through this program, Epson is looking at gaining nearly 10% market share in the first year, while the long-term objective is to garner 65%-70% market over the next three years,” said P Satyanarayana, Business Manager (Consumables), Epson India. 

    Satyanarayana is responsible for consumables business in India. He drives the sales of inkjets, toner and DMP ribbons for Epson. Currently, Epson enjoys 40% of the inkjet consumables market. The rest of the market demand is largely met by compatible manufacturers. 

    Inkjet consumables is the most profitable business for Epson–way ahead of toner and DMP– and has contributed nearly 75% to the company’s total turnover of Rs 3.7 crore from consumables in the last year. “We are looking at increasing the market share from 40% to 50% in the current fiscal and Epson Genuine Cartridge Stores program will play a big role in it,” elaborated Satyanarayana. 

    Under this program, the company will create brand awareness for its 600 EGCS partners through external signage, display racks, glow sign trolleys and schemes, apart from supporting them through advertisements in all leading national and regional newspapers. “Though these shop owners do a relatively small business when compared with other market resellers, they play a critical role in pushing the original cartridges to the end-customers, especially in the home segment and with individual buyers. Explaining the benefits of buying original, they can influence the customers to go for original cartridge as against the compatibles,” pointed out Satyanarayana. 

    The company has included even few stationery stores under this program as they sell office automation products and supply consumables too. “We want them to start with small numbers before engaging them on a continuous basis,” he added. 

    According to Epson, while the corporate customers prefer to buy original cartridges only, compatibles are very popular in small businesses and home segment. “We are announcing several end-user schemes to attract these customers and it is a continuous program at Epson. These schemes mainly target at the entry-level customers,” said Satyanarayana. Epson entry-level inkjet printer cartridge is priced at Rs 500 in the market, while compatible cartridges are sold at just 40% of the original cartridge price. 

    Epson had moved out of the national distributor concept more than a year ago, when they appointed four regional distributors to take their products to market. Last year, they increased it to seven and the regional distributors include Renovision Comnet for North; General Electronics India Ltd for West; Lalani Infotech for East; Pelikan Office Automation for Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry; Premier Data Products for Andhra Pradesh; Plus Consumables for Karnataka and Fourtek Systems for Kerala. Under them, the company has 435 Epson Authorized Consumables Partners (EACP), who in turn sell to the market and end-users.