Mr. Kunal Jhanji an MBA by profession is the CEO of M/s NA Enterprises. They are the leading Distributors in Punjab and always on top list of all Auto Aftermarket brands in the country.
With his brother Mr. Mohit, both Kunal & Mohit has been in this business for more than 11 Years helping people to chose the right products for their vehicles.
In a recent interview with Mr. Ravdeep Singh Chadha (Editor-In-Chief of Auto Insider) , Mr. Kunal Jhanji talked about his Mission, Vision, Big opportunities in Automobile Industry and Pre-Post Covid experiences.
SECTION 1- About Kunal Jhanji
Ravdeep: When did you join this business?
Kunal: My father was already into the spare part business and I joined this business in 2005 with spare parts only, but in 2007 we added audio systems also. Now I am dealing totally into audio systems only.
Ravdeep: Is the Spare part business still there?
Kunal: Spare parts are there but only retail, otherwise we are into wholesale business only.
My working process is a bit different from others, as other wholesalers sit at the counter and sell the products but we travel in the different cities of Punjab. We have our monthly calendar scheduled in advance and we go to the retail stores for distribution and if we are taking some products along with us, we take payment at that time only. so it makes the payment process a bit faster.
Ravdeep: What inspired you to join this business?
Kunal: I was more interested in jobs as I am an MBA, when I passed out from the college at that time the trend was to move on to Australia or Canada and all of my friends are into jobs. I was also interested to go to Australia or Canada or to do any job but my family instead insisted on me to join the family spare parts business.
So, I joined the family business and my interest was into audio systems, so I chose audio system line only and now I am also thinking of starting home audio systems. Maybe, very soon will be starting that also.
Ravdeep: What were the high points and low points in your life?
Kunal: Initially, when I joined this business in 2005 there was a struggle till 2007 as I was new to the business, I learned many things. At that time I got the distributorship of JBL systems and business was going really very well. But in 2012 to 2013 there were many new brands launched which increased competition in the market and even new cars were coming up with many good features. So, the audio business was not going very good at that time.
Whenever there is fluctuation in the market, at that time high-end brands suffer the most because of the product which is having a lower price amount that is always in demand but nobody will demand for the high-end products at the time of the market fluctuation.
Ravdeep: Tell us about 3 people who inspired you the most in your life?
Kunal: As I deal with high-end brands so the first one in the list is the Preeti Trading Co. Mr. Kamal (Guddu Bhai) in Mumbai.
His father was the father of car audio systems in India, as when car audio systems were launched he brought this technology to India. Till today they are dealing in high-end brands.
Second, is My elder brother, who is into this business for the last 28 years and doing very well.
Last but not the least, My father who is an expert in Spare Parts business and have an experience of 48 years.
Ravdeep: How do you manage your personal and professional life?
Kunal: As an MBA I follow the basic rule of Business. We do not discuss business at home, at home we are just a family man.
We even try to avoid taking any business-related calls at home. Unless and until the call is very important we try to ignore taking it at home.
Ravdeep: What do you suggest to the new businessman?
Kunal: According to me background matters the most, if he comes from a business background then he will be able to manage as he will be having ample knowledge about it. But if it is service class family background then it would be bit difficult for them to pick up and grow the sales well.
Ravdeep: What is your experience in the automotive industry till now?
Kunal: I started as a retailer, first we thought of growing our retail business but our shop was located in the spare parts and two-wheeler market and I was the only one selling car systems over there.
It was a crowded market, so it was not possible to park cars near the shop for stereo installations. Then I thought of getting into the wholesale business. I started taking agencies from different brands. In wholesale business, if you sell regular brands the profit margin will be less, but sales will be higher. On the other hand, if you take a high-end brand then margins will be good but sales would not be that much compared to the regular brands.
SECTION 2: About the company
Ravdeep: We would like to know that which all products and services and what all brands you are dealing with?
Kunal: I mainly have the Lumax- accessories division, it consists of car horns, fog lamps, and the Alpine brand audio systems. Alpine is distributed by Lumax in India.
I am also having Kicker, Focal, and Polk Audio. I also have some medium brands like Punk Audio and Connect. We are also dealing with Torq in the accessories division.
I have been dealing with all these brands since the beginning. To date, we haven’t changed any of the brands and even all the brands want to work with us.
Whenever we want to add a new brand to our list, we firstly, check that how many dealers they have changed and why. Following this procedure helps us to understand whether the brand will be consistent with us or not.
Ravdeep: From how many years you are into this business?
Kunal: I am into this business since 2005, it has been almost 16 years now.
Ravdeep: How many employees and dealers do you have?
Kunal: Right now I am having a total of 150 dealers. As I am having high-end brands, so the number of dealers is selective. I try to take 5-6 dealers from a city.
In total we have 25 employees, which include 3 stores. 1 is mine, 2nd my father’s and 3rd is my elder brother’s store.
Ravdeep: What is the vision of the company, what all products or brands are you thinking of adding to your list?
Kunal: Currently I am satisfied with all the audio brands which I have. As you know due to the COVID situation the market is a bit slow.
My thinking is that I should focus on the existing brands which I have, rather than adding any other new brand to the list.
Maybe we can replace 1 or 2 of the old brands which are not doing well in the market. Rest I am satisfied with all the brands.
SECTION 3: About the Industry
Ravdeep: According to you what is the impact on the business during and after the lockdown?
Kunal: During the lockdown, everything was closed for two months. We were just active online, we were not on the ground.
We did many online advertisements. I was very much active on Facebook for promotions during the lockdown period.
The plus point was that I was able to connect with the dealers all over India. It helped me to know about other states’ trends. Yes, they are very much different from Punjab.
After the lockdown, the first 10-15 days were very good for the business as everybody was thinking that lockdown May increase. So they were stalking all the products. But now the business is very slow.
Ravdeep: How do you deal with the other brands which you are not dealing with? For example, any lower Chinese brand.
Kunal: According to me nowadays there is no big difference between a billed or branded item and a Chinese or lower equality item.
If a dealer or retailer is knowing about the GST benefits then there is no problem with the billing process. On the other hand, the small retailers in the small state or village there are difficulties in the billing system with them. As they don’t prefer to take a GST invoice as they are not having any GST number.
But yes, it makes a difference. as only for a 50 bugs difference, a retailer would not take my product he would prefer any other smaller or chipper brand.
Ravdeep: As we can see there is a downfall in Car sales from the last few months and then this COVID situation is there. What is the impact of all this on your business?
Kunal: According to the current situation, I will have to add another Business Line. I am interested in the home theaters and appliances business side by side.
Ravdeep: According to you what would be the impact of electric vehicles on the car accessories business?
Kunal: Currently we are not planning anything new for the electric vehicles, once it hits the market then we will also come up with the new trends accordingly.
Our main focus is on the currently available vehicles. As there are not many activities in Punjab, unlike Delhi. So, people have money but nothing much to spend on, so they like to spend on their cars.
I understand that electric vehicles will not allow for many changes in the accessories, but yes some innovation will also come up for these type of vehicles also.
Ravdeep: According to you what would be the impact of the current India-China situation, on the automotive business. Do you think that we will be able to manufacture all the products in India only?
Kunal: Our trade is a bit difficult without import from China. Yes, there were some difficulties in the beginning when the India-China cold war started. Now everything is going on smoothly. People who are having good business relations in China are getting the products imported easily. But yes it is difficult for those who used to travel to China for the business.
Ravdeep: What are your strategies to grow your business in the coming 3 to 5 years?
Kunal: I would like to establish a retail outlet. As right now I am doing only wholesale, retail will also be a good option for all the brands which I am having.
Ravdeep: What is the big opportunity you see in the future of the automotive industry?
Kunal: Currently the situation is at the scrutinization stage. People who are not changing up with the trends are not able to survive. On the other hand, those who are able to understand the current market strategies are doing well.
In the coming 1 year, many dealers will shut down. I hope it would be a great opportunity for the deserving businessman to grow well.