Brand Roca has come a long way. From the time it launched its sanitaryware products in the 1920s to today’s smart lavatories, the brand has undergone significant transformations.
A team of journalists from India recently got a first-hand experience of the Barcelona-headquartered Roca’s facilities. Carlos Velazquez, Global Marketing Director, Roca, said, “There is change in the sanitaryware industry from where we have started. We have come a long way since our first launch. Today, its all about technology and performance that takes comfort to the next level.”
Products like Bluetooth aided showers, sensor taps, smart western commodes, LED’s are controlled by a single gadget. This has created spaces of luxury and comfort. Roca Bathrooms and its technologies have made the segment move from the utilitarian to the experiential, he added.
In the age of smart mobiles, cloud, data analytics and digital, Roca is upping its game. For instance, Roca Protect is an umbrella feature that helps monitor and maintain sustainability of assets, protecting them from damage, giving service alerts and gauging the maintenance aspects. “It’s so handy and tech-savvy that in case the faucet is switched on, you can switch it off from your phone from anywhere. It does hydration analysis of your health and offers wellness intelligence too,” Velazquez sought to point out.
A walk into the Barcelona gallery revealed the latest advancements (sensors, materials, colours, hydration meters) embedded into the product line, which accounts for a substantial market share globally. Last year, Roca held 35.2 per cent in Western Europe, Africa and the Middle East; 27 per cent in Central Europe, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia; 19 per cent in America and 18.5 pc share in Asia Pacific.
The brand is present across 170 markets, has 25 own showrooms and galleries. This gives it a stronghold in mature markets while in emerging ones such as China and India, it has been rapidly growing.
Within the Roca group, India has shown enormous promise registering the highest growth of 18 per cent. Now, the focus is to double the revenues from this market, which, according to KE Ranganathan, MD, Roca India, has seen some changes.
“The consumer is moving in the fast lane in the restroom culture. The emphasis on hygiene, technology, space saving, water conservation and ease of use, has been like never before,” he said, adding Roca has gained more visibility with the completion of the Parryware acquisition in 2008.
The fully-owned Rs 1,300 crore Indian subsidiary sees a phenomenal opportunity, generating 8 per cent of Roca’s turnover. “We make 3.5 million pieces per year in India and Roca is 10 times bigger production-wise, if compared to Parryware,” Ranganathan said, adding Roca India has been investing around Rs 100 crore each year and next year, it has earmarked Rs 150 crore.
“The next phase of growth in India is going to be driven by local brands. If you look at our portfolio, we have five brands across segments basis consumer needs – Roca, Parryware, Armani, Laufen, Johnson Pedder,” he said.
Velazquez chips in to say “We have 40 million installed capacity and we are producing 36 million pieces (as per 2017 numbers). Our second competitor produces 18 million, which is less than half of ours. This is the industrial power of the group. The strategy is to use segmentation and brand differentiators to cater to a diverse customer base. We have three to four brands per market.”
He cites the example of Laufen, a marquee brand of Roca’s premium and super-premium products portfolio. “We have grown by acquisitions which means that we target one good brand in a particular market and acquire it. On top of it, we built Roca and the local (Laufen) brand in that market, giving us an opportunity to showcase the brand’s personality,” Velazquez summed up.
- 3,500 cr Size of sanitaryware biz. Organised biz is worth Rs 2,000 cr
- Faucets market is 8,000 cr (Roca Parryware has 14-15 per cent)
- Floor tiles biz is 25,000 cr