Black September has struck Indian market
severely. The infamous economic slowdown has been mauling
the world a bit cruelly, and it is natural that India
feel the pain. Two sectors that have badly affected are
that of cars and colour television.
PSU car major Maruti
Udyog (MUL) reported a 20.1 per cent decline in sales of its
passenger car segment in the month of September 2001, selling
28,745 cars in comparison to 35,959 vehicles in the corresponding
period of the previous year.
The main reasons for the
negative growth, according to MUL sources, were depressed
sentiments and prospective buyers deferring their buying decision
due to extended inauspicious days in the month.
Maruti however did much
better in the first six months ending 30 September 2001, reporting
a 6-per cent growth in sales, which were placed at 1,70,269 cars
in comparison to 1,61,370 cars in the corresponding period.
Motors, General Motors and Hyundai Motor India too reported a drop
in sales. Hindustan Motors posted 40.6-per cent decline in sales
in the month of September 2001 in comparison to September 2000. It
sold 1.653 vehicles in comparison to 2,786 units in the
General Motors sales
dropped 30.6 per cent in September 2001 at 800 units in comparison
to 1,153 units in the corresponding month last year. Finally,
Hyundai too suffered an 18.20-per cent drop in sales in the month
of September 2001, which were placed at 6,781 cars in comparison
to 8,242 cars in the corresponding period of the previous year.
Driven by its diesel
version, Telcos Indica, however, bucked the trend, posting a
51-per cent growth in sales at 5,405 units in comparison to 5,157
units in the corresponding period last year. This is for the
second consecutive month that Indicas volumes have shot up by
more than 50 per cent. For the period April-September 2001, Telco
sold 27,535 units of Indica, up by 10 per cent over the
corresponding period last year.
Black September has also
caught colour TV manufacturers where it hurts most. After growing
by 18 per cent and 21 per cent in July and August 2001
respectively, sales of colour TV sets slowed down to 3 to 4 per
cent in September 2001, according to figures provided by the
Consumer Electronics and TV Manufacturers Association.
CETMA cited three main
reasons for the drop in sales - a sluggish economy, the overall
GDP growth rate and inadequate rains in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat,
Orissa, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. The association
expects colour TV sales to grow at an average rate of around
10 per cent per month during the peak months of October, November
and December 2001, also known as the festival season. It also
expects the full-year sales growth to average at 5 per cent.
But in value terms, growth is expected to be in the vicinity
of around 1 to 2 per cent.