20 February 2019

Interaction: Ramesh Palagiri, MD & CEO, Wirtgen Group India

We have several opportunities under Bharatmala


Over the years, WIRTGEN and its brands have been a key name in India’s road sector. Having continuously been in the forefront of improvising on the ideas and banking on the opportunities, the group has been providing all round solutions for the road construction sector. In an exclusive interview to CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES, RAMESH PALAGIRI, MD & CEO, WIRTGEN GROUP INDIA, shares his views on the Bharatmala programme, the company’s strategies against stiff competition and the current trends in the market.




There are massive projects undertaken under the Bharatmala programme by the government since the last few years. How do you look at the opportunities with the Bharatmala programme?


Under the BHARATMALA program, the WIRTGEN GROUP has several opportunities for delivering products, for flexible and rigid pavements for both bituminousas well as concrete roads and we are working very closely with the road contractors who have been awarded the jobs and are supplying machines. There is also scope, for Soil stabilisation and Recycling and also Milling in some of these projects. So, in these projects we would be able to use our Complete range of machines and specifically in places where there is aggregate shortage, there is scope for Cold recycling.




Detail us on your company’s focus on R&D and technological innovations.


The WIRTGEN GROUP has always focussed on innovation and we are not only the market leaders in Road building and Road repair equipment, but we are also the Innovation Leader. Most of our product lines are atleast a generation ahead of Competition, as we believe that it is the best way to provide value to our Customers.




Detail us on the new products launched or being launched in the near future.


Vogele has introduced several new technologies like Electric heating of Screed, High compaction screed with pressure bars, Spray jet, Mobile feeder, In- line pave, Road Scan, Niveltronic plus for string-less paving etc. With technologies like Inline pave, we are able to pave both the dense bitumen macadam & the Wearing course in a single pass operation, as Hot on Hot, thereby eliminating the tack coat and thus saving in the other costs.


In the field of Rigid pavements, we have already introduced the dual layer concrete paving using Wirtgen Slipform pavers. This technology saves costs and is already being used worldwide. Innovation in Recycling technology for Road rehabilitation also continues, with the Wirtgen Cold milling machines models in half a meter class and also in the two meter class, and with the Cold recyclers & Hot recyclers which are Green technologies. From Kleeman, we have the new track mounted impact crushers.




What distinguishes your company vis-à-vis your competitors.


In the Road building and Road rehabilitation segment of business, the WIRTGEN GROUP clearly distinguishes itself from competition, in terms of innovation of its products, the value for money, reliability and the direct application and service support what we offer to our customers.


We offer a complete end to end -360 degree solution for Road construction and Road repair starting with the Kleemann crushers, Benninghoven Asphalt plants, Vogele pavers, Hamm Compactors and then finally Recycling and Stabilisation with Wirtgen Recyclers and also concrete paving by Wirtgen Slipform Pavers.




Aftermarket services as a strategic differentiator.


Aftermarket services is definitely a strategic differentiator for us and that’s the reason we have a strong application support team to help our customers, both for rigid and flexible pavements and also we have an operator school -where we offer trained operators to our customers along with the machines, specially for the paving products. Major demands made by end-users of your equipment.




Is there a shift from initial cost price to TCO in Buyer Decisions?


Most of the contractors who are executing highways - the big and the medium sized contractors, are definately looking at the total cost of ownership, liability, the technology what is being offered to help them finish the job faster and get the right quality.




Do you offer equipment finance or do you have tie-ups with finance companies for the same.


As of now, we do not offer any equipment finance, but we work with various finance companies in India to offer the same.




Your strategy to play in a price sensitive market.


India is always a price sensitive market and the key is to offer the right product with the right level of technology, what the market requires.




Future outlook from the industry perspective and company ?


Future outlook for the industry is excellent and same goes for the Company too.