Godrej enrols Pune’s postmen to deliver refrigerators … apart from mail

thumbnailby Anindita Sengupta

WHAT’S HAPPENING

  • Postmen in Pune region are delivering more than letters and money orders. Leading corporation Godrej has enrolled the postmen to market ChhotuKool, their cheap and small refrigerator for the rural market (DNAIndia.com, 12 February 2011).
  • Postmen are being trained to educate consumers about the features of ChhotuKool. They will demonstrate and promote the product during their visits to the villages of Pune, Satara, Solapur and Ahmednagar districts. The department will earn a commission.
  • Priced at Rs 3,250 ($69), the ChhotuKool is a squat cube, enclosing just under 40 litres of volume. When empty, it weighs 7.8 kg. It can cool contents to 20 degrees below the ambient temperature (Innovation.HindustanTimes.com).
  • Chhotukool is perhaps the world’s cheapest refrigerator. It uses a cooling chip and a fan, and does not need electricity. This innovation is set to give rural India better access to food and medical supplies.

WHAT THIS MEANS TO BUSINESS

  • Rural Indians are heavily dependent on snail mail for communication. In villages, the postman is a trusted and familiar figure. People are likely to watch product demonstrations conducted by him.
  • The refrigerator is a much-needed item in India’s hot climate. Without a fridge at home, women have to cook fresh food for every meal and this is a significant burden especially since they also work on the fields. Access to a cheap fridge will ease this burden.

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