Case Study on Titan

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Titan Watches – Consumer Motivation

Background
Titan Industries is the fifth largest integrated watch manufacturer in the world and has 60% of the organized watch market share in India. Titan started its operations in 1986. When it was launched, it was the third watch company in India after HMT and Allwyn. Titan formed a joint venture ith Timex, which lasted until 1998, and set up a strong distribution network across India. Titan watches are sold in India through exclusive Titan showrooms called “The World of Titan” and through various franchisees and through retail stores. The company brought about a paradigm shift in the Indian watch market, offering quartz technology with international styling, manufactured in a state-of-the-art factory at Hosur in Tamil Nadu. Leveraging its understanding of different segments in the watch market, the company launched a second independent watch brand, Sonata as a value brand to those seeking to buy functionally styled watches at affordable prices. In addition, it focussed on the youth segment with its third brand-Fasttrack. It has also launched premium fashion watches by acquiring a license for marketing global brands such as Tommy Hilfiger and Hugo Boss, besides having in its portfolio its first Swiss made watch brand-Xylys. The Vision

The vision of Titan watches is: “To be innovative, world class, contemporary and build India’s most desirable brands”. In line with this vision, the company focussed on brand marketing rather than product marketing. Watched were considered a functional product before the entry of Titan in the market in 1986. Titan changed the perception of watches from a functional product to a personal product in the mindset of the consumer to leverage its brand name and the reputation of Tata. The major weakness of the watch industry in the 1980s was that no brand had a strong personality. Hence Titan positioned itself as a premium brand with global reach. This was achieved through a well-planned advertising strategy. When the first Titan quartz range was launched in March 1987, it was accompanies by heavy advertising. The first advertisement described the Titan quartz as the international watch one could pay for in rupees. Later campaigns emphasized that to find such watches it was not necessary to go to Europe, Japan, USA, or a duty-free shop. Post-liberalization, the market dominance of Titan was threatened by the entry of various foreign brands in India. The sprouting of the grey market and the entry of cheap Chinese products threatened the bottom end of the market. To counter their threats, Titan adopted various marketing strategies. In 2004, Titan appointed Aamir Khan to endorse its range of brands. Bijou Kurien, Chief Operating Officer (Watches), Titan Industries Ltd. (TIL), said: ‘’There is a perfect fit between Aamir and Titan – their stature, timelessness, and the love and trust they both share with the people, both nationally and internationally, makes this an ideal partnership. Moreover, Aamir has a universal appeal that extends to everyone, across age groups, just as our watches do.’’ With the celebrity endorsement, TIL hoped to promote the latest trends in the industry. The idea was to make watches that would be seen as style and fashion accessories rather than just utilitarian devices. The brand repositioned itself to a style brand, with the “What’s your style”campaign. Titan Industries roped in two more brand ambassadors from Bollywood — Katrina Kaif for traditional women's range Titan Raga — and Farhan Akhtar for Swiss-made brand Xylys. The company introduced several collections/ranges under each of its sub-brands. Moreover, it participated in the retail boom that the country was experiencing. It has opened its exclusive outlets in most of the malls and hyper markets that have mushroomed over the last few years in mega cities likes Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata and in metropolitan cities like Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai and other cities like...
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