Nepali Times Asian Paints
Picture perfect

STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP: Samsung's Tony Myoung-Sun An holds the NV 2HD model that his company is launching in the Nepali market with Shekhar Golchha of Him Electronics (right).
Samsung, the Korean company better known for its monitors and cell phones, has launched an aggressive foray into the camera market that has been dominated by the Japanese giants, Sony and Canon.

"We don't regard Nepal as a small country, this is an important market for us," said Tony Myoung-Sun An, Sales Area Manager of Samsung's Asia Group, who was in Kathmandu this week.

Korea's Samsung had gone into a strategic partnership with Golchha Organisation's Him Electronics in 2002, and since then Samsung has literally become a household name in consumer electronics. "Samsung fits perfectly with our portfolio. It is an international brand that is recognised for its quality and innovative products," says Shekhar Golchha, Managing Director of Him Electronics.

Samsung currently holds 20 per cent market share in the consumer electronics sector, and Golchha says this is growing rapidly. It has built a strong brand image in the Nepali household appliances, with televisions, washing machines, home theaters, audio systems and microwaves.

"Cameras are no longer a family commodity, it is an individual product," explains Myoung-Sun An and says Samsung wants to leverage its global leadership in digital technology to take advantage of the market broadening in cameras.

The new models launched this week are in five series: from 7.2 to 14.6 mega pixels, with one of the clearest LCD screens among new model cameras. And they don't just click pictures: they have high-definition video capability in addition to the regular functions like digital image stabilisation and face recognition. Selected models also offer multimedia features: the camera can be used to listen to music, read novels and even watch movies. Consumers can choose the model according to their pocket size as the prices range from Rs 8,900 to Rs 120,000.

"Because Samsung is not essentially known for its cameras, we need to add value," says Myoung-Sun An, "and in that the consumers are being offered high technology cameras at a comparatively lower prices." What set Samsung cameras apart is their unique designs that focus on being consumer friendly. With the feather touch technology, navigation is so simplified that one doesn't need to be a professional to take great pictures.

Him Electronics' Samsung showroom in Darbar Marg is already flooded with enquiries and orders for the new line of cameras, and Myoung-Sun An is convinced Samsung can soon be the best-selling camera in Nepal.

Golchha says the current political instability is having a dampening effect on the economy, but he is optimistic about the future. He says: "Of course it worries us. But what we try to do is see the light at the end of the tunnel. Today's need is to focus on the economic agenda. When there is money in the pocket, everything else will fall into place."

Paavan Mathema

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)