chotuKool: "Little Cool," Big Opportunity
In 2013, a team led by Gopalan Sunderraman, vice president of corporate development at Godrej & Boyce Mfg. Co. Ltd.-one of the companies owned by Godrej Group, a large Indian conglomerate-was preparing to launch an innovative low-cost refrigerator. Developed expressly for the approximately 80% of Indians who lacked access to refrigeration (a market Godrej had never before targeted), the chotuKool represented a technological marvel-a small, inexpensive thermoelectric appliance powered by a rechargeable battery. The case traces chotuKool's development and evolution from an initial product concept inspired by theories of innovation and the strategic vision of Jamshyd Godrej (managing director and chairman at Godrej & Boyce Mfg.) to a promising new line of business that emerged from a process of learning and discovery through market feedback. As the company geared up for the broader rollout of chotuKool, Sunderraman and his team faced some tough questions. What was the proper target and scope for the launch? Which strategy gave them the best chance of success? Could chotuKool really redefine the company and bring refrigeration to hundreds of millions of Indians?