According to Voltas' managing director, Pradeep Bakshi, who talked to ET, the company will spend over Rs1,000 crore to increase its manufacturing capacity, including at a new plant close to Chennai, while a second proposed Rs500 crore compressor plant in partnership with China's Highly International is still awaiting government approval.
According to Bakshi, the proposed investments are intended to support the pace of growth of the Tata-owned home appliance manufacturer, ensure its position as a leader in commercial refrigeration and air conditioning, and realize its ambition to rank among the top three brands in home appliances like refrigerators and washing machines.
According to him, as the Press Note 3 and PLI approvals are still pending, the proposed compressor facility in a joint venture with Highly under the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme is indefinitely delayed.
In accordance with Press Note 3 guidelines, Voltas had requested government approval a year prior.
A corporation having its headquarters in a nation that shares a land border with India, such as China, is only permitted to invest in India after gaining government approval, according to the Press Note 3 regulations, which were developed in 2020.
As a division of the Shanghai Highly (Group) Company Ltd., Highly is one of the biggest producers of compressors worldwide.
The state government has given Voltas 150 acres near Chennai where the compressor factory would be built. Both the Highly Rs500 crore plant and another Rs500 crore AC manufacturing facility are involved in the project.
Additionally, Voltas would invest Rs100 crore for room air conditioning in Pantnagar and Rs200 crore for commercial refrigeration and AC expansion at its manufacturing in Baroda. According to news reports, a further Rs200 crore will be invested in the Sanand, close to Ahmedabad, home appliance plant.
However, plans with Highly that are stuck may have an effect on the entire investment cycle.
The timing of Voltas' investment ambitions coincides with a slowdown in investments and a slowdown in demand for white goods in the nation as a result of macroeconomic reasons and inflation.
With a market share of about 23%, Voltas has been India's top-selling air conditioner brand for more than ten years. Second place goes to LG, a rival from Korea.
In collaboration with the European Arcelik Group, Voltas has introduced home appliances including as frost-free refrigerators, fully automatic washing machines, microwave ovens, and dishwashers. Appliances are offered for sale under the Voltas Beko name.
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