10 July 2020

Table of Contents for Post Excon 2017

Interaction- Niel Woodfin, Brand Leader-CE (APAC), CNH Industrial

I always found India to be a very good manufacturing base


In an exclusive tête-à-tête with CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES, NIEL WOODFIN, BRAND LEADER - CE (APAC), CNH INDUSTRIAL discusses FIAT’S excellent pedigree, global buyer trends, and virtues of using India as a global manufacturing hub.



Deatail us on your new launches at Excon 2017?


We have launched our 752EX twin off  roll compactor that helops us fill a market leading position in that particular segment.  The great thing is that thte operator gets complete visibility around the machine, and the water jets transverse across the platform which again enhance their visibility, and we are using a FPT (Fiat Power Train) engine, which is renowned for its fuel efficiency and for its power. FPT is one of the brands within CNH, not many people are aware that Fiat Power Train is the second largest engine manufacturers in the world. We have also launched the 770EX OL (Only Loader), customers want a good quality loader backhoes for particular applications. We have used EXCON 2017 as a platform to make people aware of our dozer, which we launched last year. It had its first full year of operations in the marketplace, and the Grader which has been in the market for two years, and both of these products really established very quickly, with good market share.




How does India compare with the global market? Is this a ‘Buyers’ Market’?


I think it’s a ‘Buyers’ Market,’ I have seen China boom. In year 2017, we saw 100 per cent growth within some of our segments in China, which now I think will level off a bit in 2018. But, if it does continue to boom then of course it becomes a ‘Sellers’ Market,’ because suddenly there is more demand and less supply.



But this is ‘price sensitive’ market. How fastidious are Indian buyer, how are you meeting stringent Cost/Quality equations.


I agree on this part, I think in the manufacturing debate — the Buyer gets good value-for-money, in regardless of what manufacturer he buys from. To be honest with you, we have been constantly looking at eliminating costs within the products. Sowhat I think is, the Buyer should be aware of the overall TCO, that’s where they need to focus on-great service support. The larger the equipment you are selling, if you are using that product as a production machine they can’t afford for it to be down. And then whilst price is important, however, it is not ‘the’ most important factor. As a matter of fact the Indian customer when he is buying, he has more offerings than ever before. Those offerings will drive competition and will increase expectations of the Indian customer.



How does your India plant compare to your other plants in the APAC region. Because India is known for ‘Frugal Manufacturing.”


You are right, because India has been a manufacturing base for a lot of global manufacturers, for a number of years now. Therefore the skills that exist in manufacturing are very good in India.So whenever I am looking at the Group, I always say I have found India to be a very good manufacturing base, in terms of its history and in terms of investment in skilling here.



Tell us about global trends in Buyer’sbehaviour. How do they compare vis-à-vis Indian Buyer trends?


I think the global trend is trying to ensure that they get products which are easier to operate. Getting skilled operators is a challenge around the world, so there is a move towards fully automated vehicles. You are seeing operations in a fully automated mode to ensure you are getting that consistent quality output from the machine, more productivity. That’s very expensive, you could invest in appropriate telematics and technology to enable that to happen. And I think right now for the Indian market, I am not seeing it moving there yet, but it will come. And I think manufacturers will be looking to produce more cost effective versions of what’s out there today.  Also, globally TCO (Total cost of ownership) is well understood, but here in India, it may be only large customers being aware about it. Customers here are more discerning about part of the purchase price. For operator comfort too, if you are trying to retain your operators, you have to make sure that as they are sitting in that machine for an eight hour shift, they should be comfortable. Another key factor is safety, so we are seeing more and more cameras being used to ensure the operator gets good visibility of the surrounding area to ensure no one will get hurt when he is operating the machine.

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