Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Titan - an Indian brand

Titan, a name that is synonymous with watches today. It is tough to imagine how in the world of Casios, Seikos and to a lesser extent, the HMTs the brand has made a name for itself. But it has. Titan was launched at a time when cheap watches were flooding the Indian market. Of course HMT was nearly on its last legs then, but to elevate watches made in India from the fuddy duddy image to something snazzy has been Titans doing all throughout. The ride has not been smooth and the company has gone through its share of troubles while building the brand to what it is today.

The brand has been built bit by bit. First and foremost, a Titan pretty much stands for reliability, durability and to a great extent style. My personal ownership experience has been so good that I barely look beyond Titan when I think of watches (I do wish that their designs were a little more sporty, but other than that, they are still very good.). And it is not just me, according to estimates Titan has something of a 65% market share in watches (Brand Equity, ET, today and Tatas site).

The brand is not focused on a single segment either. It has brands that pretty much straddles the entire spectrum of costs. The Edge, a slim watch launched recently is a head turner for sure. Indeed the Edge has got such a reputation that it has had a rub off on its other non "Edge" watches - even when they arent so slim. Raaga, their womens range (re)launched recently has impressive designs on offer.

They have made a smart move into Tanishq, their jewellery brand using some of their design acumen. That brand is going great guns too. (Not sure what they are doing in eyewear though - but I am going to give it a try.)

What prompted me to write this piece was their Heritage collection that uses design aspects from ancient India. The designs that Titan sells is the epitome of ancient India while at the same time it has the promise of modern India - reliable, durable and stylish. Sure, they are pricey, but who said stuff from India had to be cheap? This collection does not live in a state of denial about our heritage, indeed it showcases them. For long gifts from India have been the usual idols, pen sets and cloth items. India was never seen a country to gift a watch or a calculator from. Titan, I believe can change this - even as it shows other brands how to build with India on their minds and create a distinctively different brand identity for themselves.

2 comments:

Jam said...

Hey there,

As someone who's been handed down original Rolex watches (1940s model) from my grand-dad and someone who's been gifted expensive international watches (probably fakes, considering the prices), I've always believed in the quality and designs that Titan has had to offer from its stable over the past 15 odd years.

In fact, these damn watches are so good and sturdy that one doesn't even get a chance to go ahead and buy a second one. It almost seems like an indulgence to buy another Titan watch, when you already have a completely functional one on your wrist.

Man, this post brings back the famous Titan ad music to my ears.

Cheers.......Jam

Neelakantan said...

That is another great thing of theirs - their ad jingle. Mesmerizing. Thanks for reminding me abt it...