Homegrown helmet maker Studds Accessories aims to increase its market share in India to 40 per cent over the next three years. Sidhartha Bhushan Khurana, MD - Studds Accessories Ltd, confirmed the development to carandbike recently. The company expanded its production capacity to 14 million units per annum with the inauguration of two new facilities earlier this year. Studds currently holds a market share of 30 per cent in the helmet segment and aims to capitalise on the newfound push for personal mobility in the post COVID era. With India being the largest two-wheeler market in the world, the growth potential is immense for the company.
Responding to a query about growth plans from carandbike, Sidhartha Bhushan Khurana said, "Studds currently has around 30 per cent of the share in the Indian helmet market and it is the largest amongst all helmet manufacturers in the country. While the demands have been subdued because of the COVID-induced lockdown, we have continued to see growth in sales and demands from the market. With our extended efforts, we are planning to acquire 40 per cent of the helmet market in the next 3 years."
The need for personal vehicles is already on the rise since lockdown restrictions were eased, and whether you choose a scooter, motorcycle or an electric two-wheeler, safety will be paramount going forward with the change in consumer mindsets and road safety laws. The company retails its helmets via two brands - Studds and the more premium SMK range. The product line-up not only caters to the demand in India but exports markets as well.
Elaborating on the same, Khurana said, "India has the potential to emerge as the global export hub, especially given the current scenario and the relations with China. We have the manpower and resources to manufacture products for the world and most of the Indian helmet manufacturers are exporting their products in all parts of the world. We have also been exporting both of our brands - Studds and SMK in over 40 countries, in Europe, USA, Canada, Lain America and some parts in Asia. Our brands are being exported to Australia and Africa too."
Earlier this year, Studds invested over ₹ 200 crore in Haryana to set-up Asia's largest helmet manufacturing facility in Faridabad. The 5.5-acre plant makes motorcycle and bicycle helmets. The plant saw an investment of ₹ 160 crore, while the remaining ₹ 40 crore was invested in a new manufacturing plant spread over 1.5 acres for the in-house production of Expanded Polystyrene (EPS). Nearly 99 per cent of the parts used in a Studds helmet are locally-sourced. In the wake of the pandemic, the company also expanded its operations to produce personal protective equipment for essential health workers.
The amendment in the Motor Vehicle Bill for road safety laws will also give a push to the adoption of helmets more actively in India. The policy not only mandates helmets for two-wheeler riders and the pillion but also bans the sale, usage and production of non-ISI certified helmets. The latter is extremely important to eradicate substandard helmets from our roads. This new policy will come into effect from March 1, 2021, and will be a major step towards upgrading the safety of two-wheeler riders in the country.