The burgeoning construction sector has harbingered good times - Sailej Verma, Sr. Vice President (Sales), KYB-Conmat
As an exhibitor, what plans have you lined up for bauma CONEXPO India 2018?
KYB - Conmat has always actively participated and sponsored in Bauma CONEXPO India since past few years, and so this year as well we are an Associate Sponsor. BC India - 2018 is going to be one of the biggest business opportunities for the construction equipment sector. We are launching many new products this year besides displaying the new generation stationary batching plants, mobile batching plants, road paving machines, canal paving machines, elevators, concrete pumps, transit mixers from 6 to 8 cubic meter capacity with PTO & slave Engine.
What trends and growth prospects do you envisage for the concrete equipment segments in the coming years?The Indian construction equipment sector is made up of five main segments: Earthmoving equipment, road construction equipment, concrete equipment, material handling equipment, and material processing equipment. India’s infrastructure sector is poised to grow significantly with the increasing demand for development of key infrastructure projects such as roads and highways, rural connectivity, urban infrastructure including metro rail projects, ports and airports, industrial corridors, smart city projects, etc. Investment and implementation of key projects are the concerns of the construction and construction equipment industry. Several initiatives by the Government such as 100 smart city projects, urban infrastructure including metro rail projects, port development, the creation of an industrial corridor and a dedicated freight corridor, would boost the country’s infrastructure development. So, for a growing economy like India the infrastructure sector and construction industry will prosper in the long run.
How has 2018 been for KYB-Conmat?
KYB-Conmat aims to be a major contributor to the country’s growth story. We have been growing year on year and had a great 2018, and we expect 2019 to be even better. As more and more projects are being announced – be it for roadways, ports, airports, real estate, affordable housing, irrigation, etc, we are aggressively working with our customers to be part of it all. Concrete is the future, and there is no doubt about that, and we are all geared up to do our bit to make India an infrastructure-rich nation. KYB-Conmat has seen consistent growth since 2015 due to the widespread acceptability of our products in the market. We recently celebrated the rollout of our 2000th Transit Mixer from our Vadodara facility. We are looking to expand our market and reach, both domestically and internationally. We also wish to explore unchartered territories in the international market. We have some new products currently in the development stage, which we are planning to launch soon. At the same time, it will also be our endeavor to upgrade and keep our existing product offerings up-to-date with the latest technology. Our aim is to the one-stop shop for all Concrete Equipment needs of a customer and we are working on front foot to achieve that.
KYB-Conmat have been adding products in its portfolio with regular interval which needs strong R&D, adding-up requisite infrastructure, marketing support etc.; will you please brief on these important aspects?
Research and Development is very highly valued at KYB-Conmat. We have a R&D center in India, in Vadodara, and in Japan. We wish to make path-breaking innovations a norm in order to best serve our customers. Innovations are very important in today’s competitive and fast-paced market to stay relevant. Our Research and Development is working in full force on some great products, while also focusing on upgrading our existing products, which we believe, are sure to take the market by storm.
The competition is shifting from being lowest priced to technologically advanced equipment; will you brief on your edge over your competitors on higher productivity, reliability and efficiency translating into lower cost of ownership?
KYB is enjoying over 85% market share in Japan with an annual sales of over 7000 transit mixers. Its low Slump Handling & High Discharge capacity thanks to its special blade design is the hallmark of Japanese Technology & Precision. It offers the best geometric volume and operating cost in the class. The center of gravity is also low due to the welded chassis frame, and offers better operator comfort and road safety. The same design is being produced and offered to Indian customers unlike other manufacturers, who downgrade the design in India to make it cheaper.
How do you support a project to finish on time, as most developers are trying to complete their projects on or before time?
KYB-Conmat offers best customer support in understanding and resolving machinery related problems immediately, thus making the plant to run continuously and minimize the shut down time. Multiple nodes are used for providing solutions Online for any Plant Software related problems. Immediate solution can be given depending on the nature of the problem. Our team serves Online Support for software related problems and provides 24*7 support through telephone. If necessary, we assign qualified service engineers to the plant, after understanding the nature of the problem and cause of the problem at the earliest for better understanding of customer.
What would be your marketing strategies to increase your market share?
We believe the greatest challenge for companies today is not keeping up with their competitors, but with their own customers. Business used to be about getting customers to do what you wanted them to do. But customers don’t accept this anymore. They don’t like to be told what to do. They want relationships based on reciprocity, transparency and authenticity. We began this company with nothing more than a pocket full of dreams and it still takes us by surprise to see how far we have come. We want to drive the market – we don’t want to be driven by it. Our guiding principle is; Change the market before it changes you. We have been changing the products, processes, customer’s expectations along with their mind-sets at an amazingly rapid pace. But there are few focus points which will never change such as Our commitment towards customers, Our passion for technology, Our determination for Quality & Excellence and Our primary concern for the planet. Now and for the decades to come.
What is the current scenario of construction equipment export markets?
The burgeoning construction sector in many African and Asian countries has harbingered good times for companies manufacturing construction machineries and equipment as well as those selling used and refurbished heavy equipment and machinery. The appreciable increase used construction machinery in real estate and construction activities in African countries has resulted in a substantial surge of demand for concrete mixers. The rapid growth in the overall economy of many countries has accentuated the need for improving infrastructure. Governments, development authorities and even companies have begun investing in infrastructure development projects in several countries. Moreover, many African governments have invested heavily in irrigation and mining projects across the continent. All these factors have contributed immensely to the increased use of construction machinery and we are getting steady orders and lot of enquiries from many African and Asian countries like Indonesia, Bangladesh, Thailand, Kenya, Nepal, Tanzania, Philippines and Sri-Lanka.
What are the different types of RMC equipment you offer, of these, which is the most popular?
Construction companies and RMC providers are making smart investments in concreting assets, choosing equipment well, and hiring or outsourcing when it makes better financial sense. On the back of a medley of infrastructure projects, the concrete industry, from equipment to ready-mix concrete (RMC) is expanding. Industry voices expect real estate and city development to accentuate growth in the future. We foresee big potential for RMC segment in future considering factors like, arranging sub gradients locally becomes a costly affair and drives towards larger amount of wastages, stringent pollution control laws is now pushing the RMC business to new heights as it prevents air pollution to the maximum than self-preparing. Due to a lack of skilled labourers, RMC works better and thus is looked forward to become an inevitable part of construction industry. Equipment’s like Concrete pump and Transit mixers are an added advantage to accelerate the project progress that is certainly not possible while adopting the conventional methods while preparing concrete. KYB – Conmat offers various models of Batching Plants, Transit Mixers and Concrete Pumps as per the customer choice. In metropolitan cities, there are preferred 60 cu m and above capacity plants like 60, 75, 90, 100, 120 etc. In two tyre cities prefer 45/60 cu m plants and three tyre cities prefer 30/45 cu m plants considering proximity to supply in stipulated time.
What are the after sales services you offer?
After sales service is one of the most important criteria in Construction Equipment Market, and KYB – Conmat offers complete after care solutions to the customers, who are increasingly looking beyond the product purchases. They expect the total solution, right from the point of sales till the project completion. We at KYB-Conmat believe that the first machine may be sold by sales personals, but subsequent machines are necessarily sold by Service Engineers. We have much higher repeat customer rate than the market standards. In fact, our loyal and committed customer base helps us in selling to new customers.
What is your outlook on the construction equipment industry?
Infrastructural Development is the need of hour for our nation. It is the basic to build a reckoning economy. Henceforth, since past few years Government of India’s proactive approach towards development has helped in creating several employment opportunities that happen to evolve a wider scope of improvement for Construction Equipment Industry peculiarly in Road, Port, Airports, Housing, Water Bodies, Interlinking of Canal, Sewage Treatment, Water Treatment etc. India’s earthmoving and construction equipment industry has witnessed healthy growth over a past decade. Project owners are insisting on usage of construction equipment’s which enables them to monitor the quality of execution and progress of project to bring down the cost overrun. Also, the Construction Equipment Industry is quite matured now in India but apprehensively, there are several challenges yet to overcome by the CE Industry. It is essential to generate awareness among customers and educate them regarding the pros and cons of an equipment before purchasing it. This is a challenge as customers get reluctant and skeptical after going through mishaps that occur due to their ignorance while dealing elsewhere. Secondly, there is a lack of skilled manpower that can hamper the growth of CE industry as the need for trained operators and mechanics is not increasing proportionately. Thus, to improve such skills we have formed KCPL Gurukul under which we organize several seminars, training sessions, skill development programmes and talk shows.
What motivates your company to participate in this time bauma CONEXPO India 2018?
KYB Conmat is an Associate Sponsor for BC India 2018 this year and we have great expectations from the show. It is a great opportunity for all the manufacturers to meet the local and international customers in one location. I believe BC India 2018 will bring in more customer footfalls than BC India 2016, because the market sentiment is upbeat. This edition is at the time where we are enjoying good growth as an industry. It is not only a great platform for many international firms to announce their arrival in India, but also gives them a platform for new product launches. Therefore, we look forward for BC India 2018, the premier construction equipment show in India.
@EPC World Media