China Daily (USA) - - BUSINESS -

Price wars erupted in the air con­di­tioner in­dus­try in 2014 when key play­ers slashed tag fig­ures to re­duce in­ven­to­ries and boost sales. But this squeezed their prof­its.

But Guangdong Chigo Air Con­di­tion­ing Co Ltd was among those that took a dif­fer­ent route to long-term suc­cess. It fo­cused on prod­uct qual­ity. It in­tro­duced smart so­lu­tions and ad­vanced tech­nolo­gies.

China Mar­ket Mon­i­tor Co Ltd said over­all sales of air con­di­tion­ers in the Jan­uaryMarch pe­riod fell 13.13 per­cent year-on-year. But Chigo, which was founded in 1994, re­ported a year-on-year sales growth of 17.16 per­cent.

Fu­ture-minded man­u­fac­tur­ers are bet­ting on in­tel­li­gent ap­pli­ances. In­no­va­tion in this con­text does not just­mean man­u­fac­tur­ing prod­ucts like air con­di­tion­ers that can be

re­motely con­trolled us­ing smart­phones, said in­dus­try ex­perts.

An in­tel­li­gent air con­di­tioner would be able to scan a hu­man body with its in­frared sen­sors and de­ter­mine body tem­per­a­ture rel­a­tive to am­bi­ence, and cool or heat the room ac­cord­ingly, he said.

In 2014, Chigo started trans­form­ing its strat­egy for high-end prod­ucts and launched in­tel­li­gent cloud­based air con­di­tion­ers. The strat­egy made use of the cloud com­put­ing tech­nol­ogy to man­age and up­grade air con­di­tion­ers.

Li Xing­hao, founder and CEO of Chigo, said the com­pany will deepen pro­duc­tion re­forms and con­tinue to pro­pel its high-end air con­di­tioner business this year in a bid to boost growth amid slow­ing sales. He said the com­pany is tar­get­ing 100 bil­lion yuan in sales by 2020.

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