Curbing the unorganised sector is the biggest challenge: Ashish Mehta

Ekta Sharma
Ekta Sharma Sep 29 2017 - 4 min read
Curbing the unorganised sector is the biggest challenge: Ashish Mehta
Orient Bell Limited prides itself to be one of the largest manufacturers of ceramic and vitrified tiles as well as the first to manufacture ultra-vitrified tiles in India.

Established in the 1977s, New Delhi based, Orient Bell Limited is proud to be one of the largest manufacturers of ceramic and vitrified tiles as well as the first to manufacture ultra-vitrified tiles in India. Orient Bell has a successful market share of 6.0% (7th largest) within the organised market segment, marking an overall market share of 50% in the tile market. The brand is also creating million opportunities via franchise partners across India. Its chain of signature showrooms display the complete product range by aiding retailers in concept selling and is privileged to be associated with the premier construction and consultancy agencies of the country. Orient Bell has the maximum number of patents for four varieties of tiles and counts some of the leading developers and government institutions as its customers. We had a talk with Ashish Mehta, President of Sales & Marketing for Orient Bell on his plans for expanding the brand via franchise partners and the challenges for overall tile industry.

Tell us about your franchise model. How are franchisees benefited by joining hands with your brand?
Orient Bell embraces COCO and FOFO models. The COCO boutiques showcase complete décor solutions for all types of customers. These boutiques also cater to Tier 2 cities since they have a huge potentialand are now developing an appetite for high quality tiles and our Orient Bell Tile Boutiques (OBTBs) are well placed to tap this potential. We have a design template that includes the layout of these boutiques, through which we sustain both look/feel as well as branding consistency across PAN India OBTB stores. Orient Bell has high level of involvement in getting these Orient Bell Tile Boutiques up and running including initial feasibility, design, development & assistance in fabrication. Our investments in these specialised boutiques are expected to pay rich dividends during this year and beyond.

Our boutiques are expected to contribute 80% High Value Product sales and provide an unparallel buying experience to the tile and associated buyers. We also conduct various Architectural meets at our boutiques to give an idea of look and feel of the actual product.

What are the biggest challenges in your industry in India and how are you overcoming the same?
The biggest challenge of the tile industry is to curb the unorganised sector that practices unethical ways to sell the product at lower prices. This impacts the overall growth of the organised sector.

Throw some light on your concept of chain of signature showrooms and how do you plan to expand in India this year?
Orient Bell Tile Boutiques are our Company owned Company operated tile boutiques. These boutiques display our products and concepts as decorative solutions for a variety of spaces. Our boutique consultants, armed with extensive product knowledge, advice customers on the most appropriate solutions for their needs. Apart from these Company Owned Company Operated Orient Bell Tile Boutiques, we have already launched and plan to launch various Orient Bell Tile franchisee operated / Channel Partner operated Boutiques Pan India.

Do you think international players are a tough competition for Indian brands?
International players are active only in small segment of the industry and are available in limited sizes which does not impact the overall Indian market as the manufacturers here are creating high quality products with better prices.

Do you think FOCO (Franchisee owned company operated) is a better model when we talk of franchising a concept?
Franchisee Owned Franchisee Operated is more practical as it provides better exposure in different cities. FOFO also aid in earning loyalty of dealers and influencers along with better margins.

Tips to be your brands franchise partner? Any special requisitesOrient Bell Franchisee operated / Channel Partner Operated Tile Boutiques are owned and managed by our Channel Partner in that location. These Channel Partners have been shortlisted on the basis of their potential and mind set to grow their share of premium business with Orient Bell as well as their capability to provide us respectable dedicated space for Orient Bell products.   

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