Exclusive by Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY, NSW: Online retailer and traditional retail opponent Ruslan Kogan is currently conducting research and development in anticipation of launching his first self-branded range of whitegoods and domestic appliances to be sold through his online channel.

In an interview with Current.com.au, Kogan revealed he has received “a lot of requests” from his current consumers as to when his first range of appliances will be available. Kogan currently sells primarily entertainment electronics and browngoods, including LCD TVs, PVRs, Blu-ray players and netbooks.

Current.com.au can today reveal that Ruslan Kogan travelled to China last week specifically to scout out factories and partnerships for a new whitegoods appliance range. Before leaving Australia, Kogan revealed this mission would be focused on refrigeration, air conditioners, heaters and microwave ovens. Prior to this, Kogan also expressed an interest is supplying washing machines.

Kogan’s business currently represents the biggest threat to established, bricks and mortar retailers. He freely admits his business model is dependent on substantial volume sales at very low margin, with the cheap prices achieved through reduced overheads. Although Kogan has experienced success thus far with online retailers, a number of the established retail groups are eschewing an online presence.

Kogan Technology rose to prominence last year when it began offering 37-inch LCD panels for the same price as the Government’s stimulus package handout. The ‘Kevin 37’ offer created a lot of positive media for Kogan, though this was soured a few months later when the company was slammed by the ACCC for misleading advertising.