On the company’s focus on being ahead of the curve in terms of
It’s basically the expectation
of customers from the industry. The trend has to change because previously the
customer used to ask the supplier that we want this development or this concept
and in turn the supplier used to work on that. We are trying to change that. It is
a very familiar practice globally. The supplier has to work on technologies
ahead of the expectation of the customers and the supplier has to have the
capability to look at the market trends, the technology road maps, and come up
with a few concepts that is required by the market. One of the ways that people
do that is once they have to roadmap, they build the concepts and display on a
preferred customer’s vehicle. We have done that here. For example, lighting is
one of our products for the Indian two-wheeler market. The technology on that
are on the bikes are reflector based and bulbs. Going into the future with fuel
efficiencies driving a lot of these technologies, we expect LEDs to come. LEDs
are already there on the rear lamps.
Nobody has put them on the head lamps because of cost reasons, perhaps.
We are saying for safety and fuel efficiency reasons, LED technology is better.
We have actually done a lot of those concepts on our bikes like the LED
headlamp projectors, LED multi focal reflectors, etc and the customers have
appreciated that. They get a feel of the product in a much better way than
sitting across and discussing that technology.
Displaying a future concept is a trend most of us should get into and we
certainly have. This is a standard
practice abroad because they know what the customers need and build what is
ahead of their customers’ expectations. This trend has to catch on in India and
expectations from customers are high and customers are struggling because of a
lack of a technology supplier base in India. All the companies that can invest
in this technology have to take this up.
On the response to the new technologies
We had three of our customers
come here on the first day and they looked at our lamps and they asked us to do
technology shows and we even got an RFQ (Request For Quotation). That was my best
outcome. So I think it certainly works.
On other products displayed at the show
Lighting is one product we are
displaying in a big way, whether it is four-wheeler or two-wheelers. We are
also displaying our electric and electronic products for two-wheelers. We have
not got to a stage where we can display concepts on things like an integrated
starter generator systems or hybrid systems...things we are working on. It is
too early to display the concept yet. But certainly we have go interest from
the customers. In metallic we have the hollow valves and the sodium filled
valves. This is also a next generation technology for India. Other than that,
security systems are something which is a big market need here. We have not
seen too many of them on commuter bikes. It is certainly there on the premium
bikes. We are trying to push them on the commuter bikes.
On impressions of the show
I see a lot these suppliers
getting on to the R&D bandwagon. That is very good. Earlier one saw a lot
of traders displaying somebody else’s technology. We now have a lot of home
grown suppliers displaying concepts. That means working on something using
one’s capabilities and trying to understand the customer needs rather than
relying on the customer asking them what to do. This is a good trend. I can clearly see a R&D revolution in
India. In the past shows, one saw multinationals doing that now we have home
grown companies doing that.
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