How important are tier II
and tier III cities for JCB India?
It is extremely important for us. This is because the
growth of the Indian economy will be underpinned not only from the metro
cities, but also from tier-II and tier III cities. You will find a lot of
highways passing through tier II and tier III cities. So these cities are as
indispensable as any metro city for us. If we give them a solution to build the
infrastructure quickly on mechanised things, then they are willing to look at
it. In the rural markets, you can show them how you can do a fishery or a pond
with a backhoe loader without any manual labour. It is going to save a lot of
effort. That’s why a non-metro city is important because it is going to give us
additional volumes and expand the markets and the applications.
JCB has recently launched
an EcoMaxx engine, which the company claims to be a world-class
indigenously-developed engine. What are the opportunities that you foresee from
The very same engine is already there in the UK for the
past 5-6 years. It’s on 140,000 JCB
machines globally. So we have a proven engine that we are manufacturing
globally with the same technology. Secondly, we have also proved that we have
the best engine as we produced the world’s fastest diesel car-Dieselmaxx. So
that technology is the same. It’s a BS-III engine which meets the new emission
norms. It is the most fuel-efficient engine in construction equipment in India.
And it’s got 16 valves in products such as backhoe loaders. So it has more
forces. The third point is that it still meets the BS-III norms, but still not
turbocharged. So, most BS-III engines are turbocharged. So that’s why our
products are fuel-economical.
You have talked about your
design centre, can you tell us what it is all about? Is it contributing to only JCB products in
India or your global operations? And
what kind of activities is happening over there?
The design centre is in Pune. And it designs not only for
India, but for JCB use worldwide, either partly or fully. So they are a batch
of young engineers there and learning and designing things. There are about 60
odd people there. They have all the technology there to design machines or
components. The centre, which is having a dedicated team for the said
activities, is expanding and will become big one day. The designers are continuously
How your merchandise
business like apparels, shoes, etc, progressing? And how many dealer outlets
have you earmarked for this?
If you look at the apparels and other merchandises, we
sell only through our dealers. Our business is growing in this vertical because
there are a lot of customers who see a display at out outlets and eventually
buy it. So that’s a good expanding line of business. As far as safety shoes are
concerned, they are managed by a company called Rehman Industries, who are
India’s second largest shoe producer and one of the largest in the world. So
safety shoes are doing very well in the industry circles. Our designed-products are manufactured by
Rehman Industries. They will also expand
The automotive industry is
seeing an increasing number of explorations in the ‘Nano’ segment. So can we
expect the same from the construction equipment making industry in India? Can
we expect a similar initiative by JCB India?
Right now, I can’t answer this question.
Because people upgrade from cycles to motorcycles and then to cars. I think Tatas were successful because they
wanted to offer a better lifestyle to consumers. So they introduced the Nano.
People buy tractors for their living because they are farmers. But when it
comes to construction equipment, it needs to move things. I don’t know how much
cheaper you can make it because if it’s ultra-cheap, you won’t be able to move
it. You can’t remove steel from the equipment, which is a basic input. This is
because basic products and basic levels have to be incorporated at a certain
level to actually have the productivity that is required for the project. Now,
if you have to finish a project in a shorter timeframe, and you get cheaper
equipment from China, it might break down and may not be able to push the
amount of earth that is required. Furthermore, the project may not get timely
completion. Here it is absolutely important that the product is right for the
project. But you are right. Can we have a
more affordable product? Probably at a later stage, but not in a ‘Nano’
style. You need to have a product which
is absolutely able to do the job.