28 March 2020

Interview-Alakesh Roy (Zamil Steel India)

Our location in 'Modern Pune' supports growth of our business


Known as the next-generation manufacturer of structural steel buildings, Zamil Steel manufactures more than 500,000 tons of fabricated steel per annum for low rise and high rise steel buildings and structures to cater to diverse projects worldwide. ALAKESH ROY, MANAGING DIRECTOR, ZAMIL STEEL INDIA offered CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES an understanding of his company’s recent activities and his perspective of Pune as a potential manufacturing and business hub.


Give us a brief backgrounder of your company, its products and solutions offered and the industries you cater to?

Zamil Steel is a subsidiary of the Saudi Arabia-based Zamil Industrial Investment Company, which is a US$2 billion industrial group. Zamil Steel is the largest product-arm of the Group that has a strong presence in almost 65 countries and has sold its products in more than 90 countries worldwide. Our manufacturing facilities are present at India, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates. The Company started its Indian operations in 2008 and since then has been a frontrunner in producing and supplying high-end pre-engineered steel buildings and all kinds of structural steel solutions. Through its facilities around the world, Zamil Steel offers solutions for diverse industrial, commercial, agriculture, aviation, entertainment and military applications and support of infrastructure and development projects. The Company utilises state-of-the-art engineering and manufacturing software and machinery in the design, estimating, shop detailing and manufacturing of each of its products. The superior technology and global experience has enabled Zamil Steel India to efficiently cater to support any kind of projects in India — be it a refinery, aircraft hangar, warehouse or any industrial structure. The company, through its technical excellence and customer-focused operational strategy, has succeeded in establishing itself as one amongst the top brands in the market worldwide.


Give us an understanding of the investments made, manufacturing capacities?

We have invested about `130 crore for our manufacturing facilities in India. Our market focused approach has encouraged us to raise our capacity from the current 60,000 tons a year to 80,000 tons in the coming years. To achieve this target the company has actively planned numerous strategies to not just strengthen its present business portfolio but also to expand its scope of operations. Since last year, we no longer execute only conventional PEB structures or projects. We have also forayed into the hot-roll and structural steel fabrication activities in a big way. Our aim is to produce around 20,000 tons in the hot-roll and structural steel fabrication business. We are already targeting to achieve 10,000 tons from the business this year and will be expanding it to 12,000-15,000 tons in the next year. However, in our PEB business, the market can pick up only with the increase in the manufacturing activities — the situation on the growth revival of the sector is still unpredictable. But we are planning to increase our market share even in this sector by 10-12 per cent this year, and in structural steel we have achieved about 25 per cent growth. With these activities in the pipeline we are very hopeful of augmenting our growth this year.


Tell us of your company’s performance in 2015 and growth prospects till 2016?

Last year, Zamil Steel India achieved a growth of about 35 per cent. Our target this year is to grow by another 35 per cent and in the subsequent year to expand our business by more than 35 per cent from our new business verticals. Aiming to enhance our business potential, we have planned to soon enter into the turnkey civil services segment to provide total construction solutions. For instance, Zamil Steel will be assisting its customers to address their waterproofing concerns for special cladding, doors, windows etc. We have already started supply of products like special cladding, doors and windows for our customers in India. Our turnkey civil service activities will be delivered in synergy with our building solutions — i.e. engineering assistance will be provided to the projects if the buildings are constructed or supplied by Zamil Steel India. This will enable us to strengthen our business both technically and commercially. Over the years, we have associated with and offered our product solutions to numerous prestigious and first-of-its-kind projects nationally and internationally. This experience will be utilised while offering technical civil engineering services to our customers for their projects on turnkey basis.

What is the growth rate targeted through your new ventures and how can it benefit your total turnover?

As this is a new venture, we are initially focused on understanding existent engineering demands and technical requirements of the projects in the country. The company is currently analysing and studying the project scope, market opportunities, challenges, funding mode required, and such elements. Our expertise in serving different type of projects worldwide backed by our strong technical workforce will serve as the backbone for our new business activities. However, we are definitely looking to add around 10-20 per cent growth from these new business ventures to our overall turnover in the initial stages.


Tell us about the company’s agenda for 2015? Can we expect any product additions this year?

We have added numerous products to our portfolio this year. Through our new business ventures we will be offering total product solutions like specialised cladding, doors, windows and even waterproofing requirements for our clients. We were the first company in the PEB segment to break the barriers of height (50 m). We see huge opportunities for specialised engineering skills and products in the structural steel segment — which can cater to a wide variety of domains like commercial, industrial, warehousing or manufacturing. Our engineering abilities help us to offer our customers more options and widen project prospects.


Briefly tell us about your ongoing projects?

We are presently executing a special hangar project for Boeing Corporation. The project is the first-of-its-kind in Asia. Apart from this, we are doing Mars chocolate factory in Pune and are also offering our assistance to a lot of automobile and ancillary activities. We are also offering our expertise to construct one of the largest electronic manufacturing projects in Pune and have completed one mega paper mill project in Orissa. We have also bagged another large paper mill project in West Bengal. Apart from these, we are also aggressively bidding to offer our products and services to numerous iconic and mega projects.


What are the attractive qualities of Pune which led to your company making manufacturing investments in Pune?

In 2008 Pune was considered only as an automotive hub — due to which the region attracted numerous such industries and also manufacturing units related to allied activities. However, over the years, Pune has witnessed a new growth thrust. Today, the automotive industry has stepped back and the other industries have increased their attention towards this region. Engineering is one such sector, which is largely flourishing. Also, Pune is now witnessing a second wave of growth in terms of attracting investments from manufacturing and other industries like telecom, mobile handsets etc. The region enjoys a rich presence of qualitative and technical workforce. The city is known as one of the prominent educational hubs in our country. The availability of quality and trained workforce and effective transport connectivity are the crucial elements that have attracted players like us into the region. The city enjoys its supremacy even in terms of infrastructure and economical standard of living. Our location at the heart of 'Modern Pune' has effectively supported the growth of our business.


Please offer your views of the city from a doing business perspective – what it has to offer and what more is required?

Our experience of operating from Pune has been a wonderful journey. The city enjoys its own aura of excellence be it in terms of availability of skilled labour or quality infrastructure or affordable standard of living. Numerous steel mills are now being introduced in and around Pune and in the tier-II and tier-III regions of Maharashtra. This has brought an ease to the availability of raw materials. All these elements have made the city into an ideal investment destination today for manufacturing, industrial and allied activities. Furthermore, Pune enjoys an added advantage in terms of export activities, due to its close proximity to the Nhava Sheva port. The region also is at the top in terms of industrial goods consumption. All these facets open immense prospects for industrial and economic activities. However, the region still requires improvement in air-transport connectivity and infrastructure. Also the government needs to fast track actions on projects like the Pune Metro which is yet to be implemented.


Briefly tell us about the future plans of your company?

We are expecting the market to potentially grow by 2016-17. We have planned our capacity augmentation strategies on these lines. Apart from this, we are also trying to establish strategic partnerships with many other companies to increase our product portfolio and services offered. The Indian government's initiatives like 'Make in India' will attract numerous manufacturing industries to India and especially to potential regions like Pune. This will evidently drive our business activities. We expect numerous opportunities from manufacturing, warehousing and allied activities to drive the demand for structural steel products in the coming years.

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