V.G.Sakthikumar, Managing Director, Schwing Stetter Sales and Services Private Limited Speaks on Road Construction Equipment Sector
Your take on India’s road construction equipment Industry in the coming year. How do events like Excon or Bauma Conexpo India help boost your positioning in the industry?
Current construction equipment market in India is to grow at a rate of 25%. Every year, Schwing Stetter India have been launching many new innovative products and technologies in Excon and Bauma Conexpo India. These expos provide a platform to bring together existing and new customers, suppliers, OEM, etc.
Given that India has an infra-deficit and needs about $7 trillion over the next 7 years, this would itself trigger a construction equipment (CE) business. Do you think in the present landscape optimum capacity utilisation be achieved over the next 3-4 years?
Many new regulations are disruptive in nature which will trigger the launch of many new products. The factories are required to realign to meet the demand for such new products. In that sense, the current capacity for the existing product range may not be sufficient to meet the demands for infrastructure development in the next three to four years.
Spurred by road and highway projects, some part of this equipment segments have seen a spurt of growth in the last few months. Will this open opportunity in the bullish demand sustain for the next 3 years?
Yes, we foresee to be positive for the next three years forward.
What are your expectations from the policymakers, the things that were promised in the past were they met?
We hope the Government continues to focus on investing in infrastructure and give the top priority for development. We hope the CEMM act comes into action which will greatly help the construction equipment industry at large. We also expect good financial support is also available through banks and NBFC’s for infrastructure development and is very much required for infrastructure companies and for machinery manufacturers.
According to the Off-Highway Research Indian Annual Review 2018, construction equipment sales in India grew 17 percent in 2017-18, building on the 36 percent upswing witnessed in 2016-17. Going forward, what will drive the Indian construction equipment market?
Clearly, we expect Road, irrigation, ports, RMC, railways, metro rail, power (i.e) nuclear, thermal, solar, wind, hydro, gas based, real estate and other community buildings to be the major demand drivers.
The current Indian government is placing a lot of emphasis and investments into road infrastructure. How has it helped your industry in gaining good opportunities? Are you doing any projects in this sector? If yes which are what are they?
Schwing Stetter machines have reached across India for national highways, state highways rural roads and village roads, etc. Similarly, for construction of concrete roads our equipment like higher capacity batching plants, boom pumps and concrete pavers are very popular. On the other end, we supply self – loading mixers and smaller pumps. Apart from concreting machines, we offer motor graders, wheel loaders and cold milling machines which are predominantly used in both asphalt and concrete roads.
What is the need of the hour besides technological advancement in road construction equipment sector?
The Government has permitted higher axle loads for the trucks. We sincerely hope the roads are built to withstand the road condition, the regulation is imposed more stringently to stop further overloading beyond this relaxation. Maybe it’s time for the Government to look at the specification of road and road making machinery for more load bearing roads that last longer.
What new equipment are you planning to add to your existing portfolio? What are your plans for upcoming BC India 2018?
We have been regularly launching new products to meet the requirements that arise from time to time. For example, Schwing Stetter India’s newest launches are SuperSix Concrete Transit Mixers with IoT Ready, IoT In, and GPS, and Stetter Batching Plant M25 Z which were launched recently in response to the feedback received from the customers, operators, project personnel at the site. This is also in line with the Digital India initiative. Supersix concrete transit mixers was launched in partnership with Mahindra Powerol Engines. Schwing Stetter India is the very first company in India to have launched for IoT applications being available for our concreting and non-concreting line of equipment. During the Bauma Conexpo India 2018, we will be launching many machines like the mobile batching plant, stationary batching plant, concrete pumps, concrete transit mixer, concrete pavers, wheel loaders, excavator, rotary drilling rig, all-terrain crane, crawler crane, and cold milling machine.
The company’s growth projections in the coming year and anything that you would like to add?
We are investing heavily in after-sales infrastructure like service, parts support, and training. We will continue to do that since our equipment population is growing.
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