The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Brand Kanchan to bear fruit

Siliguri, Nov. 16: The Videocon Group is keen to revive the Kanchan brand as well as the unit.

The state government-run Kanchan was the first food processing unit to be set up in the region.

Within 24-hours of Videocon taking physical possession of the closed enterprise, the company’s officials disclosed today that a proposal to start a small-scale fruit processing division on the same campus along with their electronic manufacturing unit has been discussed.

“We feel that the Kanchan brand still has market value. We are thinking of reviving it by opening a small fruit processing unit on the same compound, obviously after the launch of our primary project, which is television and computer manufacturing,” Gautam Sengupta, Videocon’s eastern regional head, said over phone from Calcutta.

“The unit will produce processed fruit under the Kanchan brand name. Once we acquire land and set up the special economic zone, the unit will be shifted there. Production will also be increased as we intend to tap processed fruit markets in Saarc countries,” the regional head said.

Sengupta confirmed that he, on behalf of his company, had signed an agreement in Calcutta on Tuesday. Debasish Shome, the managing director of West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation, signed as the other party.

“We signed it and sent a senior executive with government officials to take physical possession of Kanchan yesterday,” Sengupta said. “Work has already started to ready the existing factory for installation of our machines that are at the Calcutta port now.”

The overhauling of the factory is expected to be over in a month, after which the company engineers would set up camp at the unit to install the machines, Sengupta said.

“While the fruit processing plans remain in the pipeline, all the 35 existing employees of the present unit, who are getting salaries ever since we took over Kanchan, will be inducted into on-job training in electronic goods manufacturing,” the official said.

State urban development minister Asok Bhattacharya said: “It seems that the company is working according to its target of starting production by next year.”

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