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We are expanding the horizons of intralogistics, says Sunil K Gupta, President, KION India

We are expanding the horizons of intralogistics, says Sunil K Gupta, President, KION India

Your views on the warehousing sector in India
The global MHE market is showing strong YoY growth and the domestic market is surpassing that growth rate by continuously registering double-digit CAGR. The growing MHE market has a major contribution coming from the warehousing sector. Over the years the warehousing sector’s contribution has increased from ~20% to ~40% of the total MHE market. According to ‘Research and Markets’, India’s warehousing sector is likely to expand at a CAGR of more than 15% during the 2022-2027 period and I believe, this is certainly a promising growth potential. The Indian logistics and warehousing market are steadily gaining momentum with increasing demand and supply mainly due to a surge in online purchases and a shift in consumer buying patterns, since the Covid-19 pandemic. The sector has transformed significantly from storage-driven activity to specialized functions covering end-to-end management of goods, value-added services towards last-mile delivery, predictive planning, and analytics, among others. It is visible that e-commerce and the demand for efficient supply chain management continue to grow, and witness an incremental demand for entry-level MHE, electric pallet trucks, electric stackers, and electric forklifts. With increasing fuel costs and environmental awareness, future smart warehouses are likely to be based on non-pollutant energy-efficient material handling equipment. Moreover, with increasing palletization, improving the logistics supply chain, the need for high-rise racking systems, and the urge for smart intralogistics, the warehousing market looks bullish and is expected to attain new peaks in the coming years.

With the economic recession on the card, would the warehousing sector take a hit, your views?
The previous recession, which came with Covid, has impacted the logistics market positively because consumers shifted from services to materials, and this increased the need for logistics services enormously. I believe that the forecasted global recession would not hit hard on the Indian MHE market. The economic outlook for 2023 will feel different depending on where you are in the world, according to the World Economic Forum’s Chief Economists Outlook. There are significant variations between geographies and industries. Most chief economists expect moderate or strong growth in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia. I am very optimistic that in such situational circumstances, the Indian logistics and warehousing businesses would be very less hampered. Nevertheless, we stand far better prepared and well-positioned to overcome this global slowdown situation and are more futuristic about the foreseen growth. We all need to put more effort into business development to windbreak the risks and strongly grip the market.

How has your organization performed in the last three years?
The last three years were very challenging due to the Covid-19 pandemic, geopolitical conflicts like Russia-Ukraine War, and the subsequent unprecedented increase in commodity prices and supply chain disruptions. KION India determinedly coped with all the challenges and registered the highest-ever order intake and production volume in 2022. KION India is well positioned to benefit from global megatrends and has been surpassing market growth during recent years.

Which are the MHEs and automation you have launched recently for the warehousing sector? Please share the sustainability and technology features (IoT, telematics)
KION India offers a versatile range of more than 300 MHE solutions specifically designed for different applications and customer segments. Our multi-brand integrated offering includes IC forklifts ranging from 1.5T to 20T, Electric forklifts ranging from 1.5T to 18T, stackers (with mast heights up to 6.5m), battery-operated pallet trucks, tow trucks up to 25T, electric reach trucks with mast height up to 15m, order pickers, VNA, AGV, and AMR. Our OM brand supplies exclusive Made in India forklifts and warehousing solutions, specially designed with consideration of the Indian MHE market needs and customer requirements. OM’s latest PLUS series – from Electric Forklift range is loaded with features that ensure better productivity, performance, serviceability, strength, safety, and life and can lift a full load at 4.5m.
Linde is one of the world's largest manufacturers brand of forklift trucks and warehouse equipment and has been setting standards with MHE solutions for more than 50 years. Linde, a brand known for its German technology excellence, offers high-performance solutions for intralogistics. Linde’s unique product portfolio comprises 77 series and ~10,000 equipment options which include robust diesel forklifts, electric forklifts, warehouse equipment, fleet management software, automation solutions, driver assistance systems, and services around the forklift trucks. Linde material handling presents advanced automation solutions with a wide range of electric forklifts, pallet trucks, and tow tractors from the MATIC series. All these models are equipped with intelligent navigation and safety technology, enabling them to operate automatically or manually. We recently launched Linde Electric Counter Balanced trucks delivering high efficiency & performance along with the option of a Li-Ion battery solution. We also offer high-end Technology & IoT-based complete warehousing solutions under the Linde brand. These real-time IoT solutions comprise telematics, wireless communication & artificial intelligence. The new robotic solution, the most advanced available solution, provides incredible competitiveness gains and unique flexibility for the customers. Moreover, we provide comprehensive logistics solution that integrates with clients' logistics management software, ensuring real-time supervision.

Please share with us your dealers’ network and the after-sales services you offer?
At KION India, we value being closer to the customer and strive to provide better customer service through our close-knit sales and service network having 125+ touchpoints across India, covering most of the Tier 1 & Tier 2 cities as well as near to tier-3 cities. Our dealer’s network is strong enough and is fully committed to better customer satisfaction through a well-trained and skilled sales and service workforce. We are very focused on upskilling our team and conducting various practical training programs on a regular basis. We also offer specific retention schemes as per market requirements, on a time-to-time basis, to incentivize their efforts and success. 

Financial schemes play an important role in increasing product sales, what are the rental and financial schemes you offer and tie-ups with various financial institutes?
Yes, of course, financial schemes play an important role in increasing product sales and we have tie-ups with many financial institutes to avail the financial schemes for our customers.  We also facilitate rental solutions through our world-leading technology brand Linde. We supply the equipment on 3-5 years of rental contracts to various customer segments from different industries.

What are your growth plans for your organization?
We are expanding the horizons of intralogistics, being one of the world-leading groups in industrial trucks and supply chain solutions. We are continuously challenging ourselves to set higher benchmarks with our capabilities, quality supplies, and better customer satisfaction. Our R&D team is continuously engaged in innovation, upgradation, and customization of MHEs, as per customer and market needs, and contributing to the upgradation of the Indian MHE industry. We are steadily ramping up with product offerings to provide the latest technology solutions based on evolving customer requirements. We have an extensive range of MHE solutions, suitable for different applications in the warehousing sector through our multi-brand integrated offering under the brands OM, Linde, Baoli, and Dematic. We aim to keep upgrading and evolving as the most reliable and trusted brand in the Indian MHE industry.


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