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Dhaka Tribune

Driving Bangladesh's electronics industry: An inside look at Electro Mart's rise

"Inspired by government support, we shifted to manufacturing, ensuring world-class quality under the "Made in Bangladesh" label, resonating with our customers' trust," said the deputy managing director

Update : 28 Mar 2024, 02:19 PM

In an exclusive interview with Dhaka Tribune’s Tanveer Mohiuddin, the Managing Director of Electro Mart, Mohammad Nurul Absar discusses the journey of the company, from its beginnings as an electronics wholesaler to its current position as a leading manufacturer of electronic products in Bangladesh, highlighting its partnerships, manufacturing capabilities, market strategies, and future aspirations.

Can you share with us the journey of Electro Mart from its inception to its current position as a leading manufacturer of electronic products in Bangladesh?

In the 1980s, Mohammed Nurun Newaz Selim, the current chairman of the Electro Mart group started Electro Mart in Chittagong with a relatively small office, wholesaling electronics products from various countries. With an initial investment and the collaborative efforts of my brothers, we grew nationwide. In 1998, we introduced Konka Color TV and Gree air conditioners to Bangladesh, marking our entry into manufacturing. Today, we're proud to manufacture global brands like Konka and Gree alongside our local brand, Haiko.

What inspired the transition from being a seller of low-cost imported televisions in the 1990s to becoming a manufacturer of various electronic products with global brands under the "Made in Bangladesh" label?

The introduction of Konka and Gree in 1998 marked a turning point. We offered quality products at affordable prices, challenging market norms. Back in 1998, the price of colour TVs in the market was Tk30,000 to Tk35,000 whereas, we started selling Konka TVs at Tk12,000 only. We also started marketing with a five-year warranty, which at that time was unprecedented for a local manufacturer.

Afterwards, we started bringing in other products, including Konka fridges, washing machines, microwave ovens and other home appliances, and in 2004, we started assembling products

Inspired by government support, we shifted to manufacturing, ensuring world-class quality under the "Made in Bangladesh" label, resonating with our customers' trust.

How has the partnership with global brands like Konka and Gree contributed to Electro Mart's growth and success in the Bangladeshi market?

Initially, as sole distributors, our collaboration evolved. We imported products in a semi-knocked style, later establishing a manufacturing plant with their technology. This partnership elevated Electro Mart, making us synonymous with quality electronics in Bangladesh.

Could you elaborate on the investment made in establishing the Trade International Industries Ltd plant in Sonargaon and its significance for Electro Mart's manufacturing capabilities?

With government support, we transitioned to manufacturing, investing around Tk5,000 crore. This investment brought advanced technology to Bangladesh, creating employment opportunities and aligning with national development goals. We will plan to invest more for the production of small kitchen, electronics and home appliances items

Electro Mart has directly and indirectly created over ten thousand employment opportunities, uplifting livelihoods across the nation.

What role does R&D play in Electro Mart's strategy for developing products tailored to the needs of Bangladeshi consumers?

Our in-house R&D, coupled with collaboration with Konka and Gree, ensures our products meet market demands and environmental standards. This synergy results in unique, energy-efficient, and eco-friendly offerings.

Haiko, our own developed brand, is gaining traction. We recently introduced Haiko air conditioners, reflecting our commitment to innovation and eco-friendliness.

How do you ensure that the products manufactured by Electro Mart meet global standards of quality?

Electro mart showroom in Gulshan 1

We employ cutting-edge technology and virgin materials, meeting international standards. Our products prioritize energy efficiency, Gree air conditioners can save up to an impressive 70% in power consumption, and all this is reflected in our approvals by BSTI, BUET, and PWD.

What are the current distribution channels utilized by Electro Mart to reach consumers across Bangladesh?

We employ a multi-tiered distribution strategy, including wholesalers, retailers, distributors, and online platforms, ensuring widespread accessibility. We also maintain over two hundred service centres for after-sales support.

Could you provide insights into Electro Mart's plans for entering the export market by 2030 and the anticipated challenges and opportunities?

We aim to enter the export market by 2030, contingent upon raw material availability and policy support. Bangladesh's low-cost labour offers a competitive edge amidst global manufacturing shifts.

As Deputy Managing Director, what are your personal goals and visions for Electro Mart's future growth and development?

My goal is to contribute to Electro Mart's growth through participatory management, fostering a conducive work environment, and enhancing consumer satisfaction.

How do you perceive the evolution of the electric appliances market in Bangladesh, and what trends do you foresee shaping its future?

Bangladesh's electronics market has grown rapidly, driven by government policies and rising incomes. I envision Bangladesh becoming a manufacturing hub, fueled by innovation, affordability, and expanding rural markets.

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