Au­to­lite to fo­cus on two-wheeler seg­ment with its sig­na­ture prod­ucts

Auto components India - - COVER STORY - Anusha B

Au­to­lite In­dia Limited, the flag­ship com­pany of the Au­topal-MPG group, will ex­pand its hori­zon in the twowheeler seg­ment. The growth of the au­to­mo­tive in­dus­try in In­dia is de­tailed as 80% in twowheeler mar­ket, 15% in pas­sen­ger car seg­ment and 5% in the com­mer­cial ve­hi­cle seg­ment. In line with that the com­pany has tuned its ob­jec­tives and widened the two-wheeler net­work. The com­pany’s cur­rent pres­ence is in the halo­gen bulbs in the twowheeler af­ter­mar­ket seg­ment and it is very in­signif­i­cant. But plans are sketched to widen its scope for two-wheeler busi­ness.

Speak­ing to Au­toCom­po­nents

In­dia, Adarsh Mahipal Gupta, Di­rec­tor, Au­to­lite In­dia Limited, stated, “We are pre­dom­i­nantly serv­ing the com­mer­cial ve­hi­cle seg­ment. About 75% of our busi­ness caters to the com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles and 20% to pas­sen­ger cars and 5% to the two-wheeler seg­ment. But the mar­ket sta­tis­tics cor­re­spond­ing to growth is vicev­ersa.

Hence we need to leap for­ward in the two-wheeler seg­ment. We tar­get to in­crease our sales from 5% to 20% in this seg­ment and plan to in­crease the num­ber of dis­trib­u­tors. We have tied up with TVS Mo­tor Com­pany and the group com­pa­nies of TVS are sell­ing our prod­ucts. In ad­di­tion to bulbs which we have cur­rently, we plan to get into head lamps, tail lamps, in­di­ca­tors, blink­ers in the two-wheeler mar­ket for the Hero Mo­toCorp, TVS Mo­tor Com­pany, Honda Mo­tor­cy­cles and Scoot­ers In­dia (HMSI) and Ba­jaj Auto.”

The com­pany not only plans af­ter­mar­ket prod­ucts for the do­mes­tic sup­ply but also tar­gets to ex­port all these prod­ucts. In OE side in two-wheeler, it does present in the bulbs and sketches its ex­pan­sion in head lamps. It has also started sup­ply­ing pro­to­types of LEDs for the two-wheeler but it is too early to ex­plain about the topic, the man­u­fac­turer stated. There are a lot of un­or­gan­ised play­ers in the two-wheeler mar­ket, thanks to de­mon­eti­sa­tion, the mar­ket is now sail­ing in the dig­i­tal sea get­ting or­gan­ised. “We also ex­pect some re­forms based on the GST im­ple­men­ta­tion. We fore­see that all two-wheeler will be LED-driven in a year or two ex­trap­o­lat­ing the sta­tis­ti­cal fig­ures. The LED tech­nol­ogy is also get­ting af­ford­able day by day,” opined Gupta.

The com­pany also re­marked that 6-7 years from now the en­tire pas­sen­ger cars and com­mer­cial ve­hi­cle seg­ment will be LED­driven. As of now the day time run­ning lamps are al­most LED driven in all pas­sen­ger cars and com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles. “We have re­cently grabbed a Rs 480-crore worth project from Tata Mo­tors. There is an up­com­ing com­mer­cial ve­hi­cle from Tata Mo­tors in

which the tail lamp will be em­bel­lished with LED. We are the sin­gle sup­plier for the same. We also have bagged or­ders from Mahin­dra and Tata Mo­tors for other ve­hi­cles,” Gupta said.

LED has ex­hib­ited its pres­ence in the In­dian mar­ket in the day time run­ning lights, in­di­ca­tors, blink­ers and now tip-toes to the tail lamps. Inas­much as head lamp it will come but the cost fac­tor and tech­nol­ogy has to be huge in this di­vi­sion. Con­trol­ling of light is crit­i­cal in the head lamps and it is of the ut­most use in the ve­hi­cle. The tech­nol­ogy has to head­way and ad­vanced LEDs have to be in place. Nor­mal LEDs can­not with­stand the heat gen­er­a­tion and fail­ure of LEDs might oc­cur. Ad­vanced LEDs has to be in­stalled which will ex­tort ad­di­tional money for head lamps to be LED-driven in to­day’s sce­nario in the In­dian mar­ket. But the com­pany has sent pro­to­type sam­ples and the dis­cus­sion needs to be post­poned for some­time said Gupta. Tail lamps, in­di­ca­tors, day­light run­ning lights are sim­ple LEDs and it is easy to em­brace the LED tech­nol­ogy in these splits. Also in gen­eral the con­sump­tion of en­ergy will be one-sixth of the halo­gen and HID bulbs. Safety is the para­mount at­tribute ev­ery­where and the com­pany gives so­lu­tions in 2 ar­eas, tech­nol­ogy and train­ing. The daz­zling ef­fect is the main rea­son be­hind a lot of ac­ci­dents. The com­pany has ‘auto-dip­ping’ tech­nol­ogy de­vel­oped for head­lights. This tech­nol­ogy is op­tional where it au­to­mat­i­cally re­duces the in­ten­sity of the glow when it senses the ve­hi­cle ap­proaches to­wards with the help of sen­sors fit­ted in­side. This tech­nol­ogy is an af­ter­mar­ket serve as OEMs stopped in­vest­ing in the old tech­nolo­gies. The com­pany’s growth in the af­ter­mar­ket seg­ment is 40% year –on- year to high­light.

On the train­ing front, the com­pany con­ducts aware­ness pro­grammes on spu­ri­ous prod­ucts. The un­or­gan­ised seg­ment is re­plete with me­chan­ics and in all the ve­hi­cles drivers are tak­ing re­spon­si­bil­ity for the re­place­ment of the dam­aged prod­ucts. Hence it is nec­es­sary to ed­u­cate the drivers, the me­chan­ics and the fleet own­ers. The com­pany is con­duct­ing cam­paigns with ded­i­cated team in the ser­vice cen­tres and set spe­cific tar­gets to ed­u­cate the lay­men on the coun­ter­feits and Chi­nese-makes.

The com­pany claims that it is the one which has pi­o­neered sim­u­la­tion tech­nolo­gies in In­dia. As and when re­quired the sim­u­la­tion soft­ware is sourced from the so­lu­tion provider like An­sys and sim­u­lates and tests its prod­ucts. Not only does it sim­u­late but also goes for road test­ing to en­dorse the re­li­a­bil­ity of its prod­ucts.

Au­topal-MPG group has recog­nised re­search and de­vel­op­ment cen­tres in Jaipur, Pant­na­gar and Pune. The man­u­fac­turer stated that the work cur­rently in its R&D is ‘auto dip­ping’ head­lamp tech­nol­ogy but the ma­jor­ity of its R&D ef­forts goes into bat­tery seg­ment. The com­pany has sketched plans to man­u­fac­ture lithium ion bat­ter­ies in In­dia. The process is half the way now and pro­duc­tion is ex­pected to com­mence from the next fis­cal year. Ba­si­cally the bat­tery man­u­fac­tur­ing goes in 2 stages like cell man­u­fac­tur­ing and bat­tery pack­ag­ing. Ac­cord­ingly the com­pany has built up ca­pac­i­ties for the same in Jaipur and Gurgaon. It also works on LED front light­ing which is sim­i­lar to the Adap­tive Front Light­ing Sys­tem (AFS) tech­nol­ogy.

“We are also man­u­fac­tur­ing elec­tric ve­hi­cles. One of our prod­ucts is elec­tric rick­shaw for which the bat­tery is sourced from out­side. We are work­ing on Lithium ion bat­tery man­u­fac­tur­ing and we are ex­pect­ing to em­bark on the pro­duc­tion very soon. With nor­mal bat­ter­ies, it is ex­pected to run the ve­hi­cle for 80-90 kms and with Li bat­tery we can reach up to 130 kms,” high­lighted Gupta.

The com­pany has re­ported a turnover of Rs 350 crore in the au­to­mo­tive seg­ment and 75% of its turnover comes from com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles, 20% from the pas­sen­ger cars and 5% from the two-wheeler mar­ket. The bat­tery mar­ket is amaz­ingly greater and it is ap­prox­i­mately Rs 30,000 crore mar­ket in the au­to­mo­tive side. “With the elec­tric ve­hi­cles get­ting op­er­a­tionalised in a mass scale we could clinch Rs 1000 crore very eas­ily and with the bat­tery man­u­fac­tur­ing in place the turnover will scale high leaps and bounds,” stated Gupta.

Adarsh Mahipal Gupta, Di­rec­tor, Au­tolote In­dia Limited

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