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Need more than lip service

 Established in 1979, today ElectroMech is the largest industrial overhead cranes manufacturer in India. It offers a complete range of hoists, cranes and customised material handling equipment for wide ranging applications in manufacturing plants and infrastructure projects. Over the past 35 years, ElectroMech has developed a small army of disciplined soldiers committed to a single cause ‘to make ElectroMech the biggest and the best’. Since 1999, this army is being led by Tushar Mehendale.
In an exclusive interview with OEM Update, Mr Mehendale speaks about his company’s roadmap for ‘Make in India’.
Scopes for material handling industryHe observes, “Make in India” from two different perspectives. One as being actual participants in the movement. Case in point being ElectroMech’s global partnerships and its global market spread. For the global market of industrial cranes, ElectroMech manufactures a significant portion of its cranes in India and ship it across to the customers with a small part of the crane being fabricated and assembled at its partner factories located in the clients’ countries. “In our joint venture with Zoomlion, we are also in the process of ramping up our production capabilities for Tower Cranes so that we can manufacture them in India and ship them to different parts of the world as India is strategically located as compared to China for servicing the markets of Middle East and Africa,” says Mr Mehendale.
In the other perspective, ElectroMech also looks forward to benefitting from the success of ‘Make in India’ initiative. “Today we are the India’s largest manufacturer of workshop duty industrial cranes,” Mr Mehendale avers. “The more investments start happening in the manufacturing industry which comprises a major chunk of our business, more will be the demand for material handling equipment in the industry. This will lead to a boost in the market size and will be beneficial not only to us at ElectroMech but also to the overall material handling industry.”
Challenges and roadmapThough ‘Make in India’ initiative has been designed to facilitate investment, foster innovation, enhance skill development, protect intellectual property and build best-in-class manufacturing infrastructure, there are many concerns can be added to it. A lot of things need to be done to ensure that ‘Make in India’ succeeds. “Smart and sleek looking branding campaigns can only generate interest and pique the interests of the global community. However, the realities on the ground need to change,” Mr  Mehendale observes. If one is to look at a substantial boost in the manufacturing space, then the first and foremost reforms need to happen on the taxation front – both direct as well as indirect, he said.
“The so called ‘tax terrorism’ being supposedly unleashed on foreign companies needs to be looked into and issues need to be addressed so that the image of the country gets a positive makeover. Similarly the promised GST regime needs to come into effect as planned, because any manufacturing industry thrives on economies of scale and the current indirect taxation regime precisely thwarts this from ever occurring in India,” Mr Mehendale suggests.
Moving on, the basic requirements of the industry – land, electricity and transportation infrastructure – need to be addressed on priorities. Today investors find it extremely difficult to get land for their industrial projects that is well connected by an efficient road network, is legally straightforward to buy and is available for a reasonable price. Similarly issues related to supply of power – quality, quantity and ability to process the connection in the shortest possible time, need to be resolved. Acute shortage of road infrastructure that can effectively allow quick movement of manufactured goods between the factory and the end users is another critical issue. “Multimodal transportation needs to be evolved in the country on the same level as those that exist in developed countries,” opines Mr Mehendale.
ElectroMech and ‘Make in India’The concept of ‘Make in India’ is not something new to ElectroMech as it has always been making in India and has been supplying to various global customers who have been making in India. The ability of India to attract attention of the global industry in making India as their global manufacturing base hinges upon the critical success factors as elucidate before. However, Mr Mehendale says, “We are hoping that the government provides more than lip service to the ‘Make in India’ initiative and we are all charged up to respond to the increase in demand that this initiative will lead to.”
All the industries have been smarting from low capacity utilisations for the past few years and are fervently hoping that this renewed vigour in manufacturing can help them lift their fortunes, he adds. “We have been prepared to cater to a much larger market that was supposed to emerge over the past 4 years, which unfortunately in retrospect was a mirage. So we hope that ‘Make in India’ will help us to really use our capabilities to our fullest extent.”________________________________________We are hoping that the government provides more than lip service to the ‘Make in India’ initiative and we are all charged up to respond to the increase in demand that this initiative will lead to.
Tushar Mehendale, Managing Director, ElectroMech

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