New Delhi, Aug 24, 2011
Maharatna Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) has launched a Rural Dealership Scheme in order to encourage use of quality steel items in predominantly rural areas, and to increase the penetration of the company’s branded products in the country’s hinterland. The new scheme envisages appointment of ‘rural dealers’ in talukas and blocks across the country.
This initiative is in addition to SAIL’s existing 5-year-old Dealership Scheme under which nearly 2,700 dealers operate in 630 districts in the country.
The Rural Dealership Scheme will enable SAIL to reach its branded products like SAIL-TMT rebars and SAIL-JYOTI (galvanised plain & corrugated sheets) to grassroots-level rural consumers across the length and breadth of the country. To ensure that SAIL steel is easily available and at competitive prices, the company will arrange transportation of the steel products from its nearest warehouses to the dealers’ outlets and bear the transportation costs.
The scheme envisages appointment of more than 1,000 rural dealers in all states of the country during the current financial year. Due preference for appointment shall be given to applicants belonging to SC, ST and OBC categories. To encourage wider participation, suitable financial incentives have been provided under the scheme. SAIL also plans to facilitate business for prospective dealers through suitable promotion/publicity avenues.
Appreciating this initiative by SAIL’s Central Marketing Organisation, SAIL Chairman C.S. Verma said: “The rural market in India is undergoing rapid transformation with its newfound purchasing power. This potential could help us in raising per capita steel consumption in the country provided we understand their requirement better and produce suitable products. We need more innovative steel solutions suited to the dynamics of the rural market.”
The new Rural Dealership Scheme is expected to help increase per capita steel consumption (PCSC) in our country in the long run. At present, PCSC in rural India is estimated to be only 9.78 kgs as compared to around 140 kgs in urban areas of the country.
SAIL’s existing Dealership Scheme has been growing from strength to strength. During Q1 (April-June ’11) of the current financial year, SAIL achieved 21% growth in sales through its existing dealer network. Sales of branded products SAIL-JYOTI and SAIL-TMT witnessed growth of 57% and 9.5%, respectively, through this distribution channel.