We ex­pect rapid growth of agro­chem­i­cals sec­tor

Mar­ket­ing wizard SP Mo­hanty was as­signed ad­di­tional charge of CMD in July 2016 and he trans­formed the com­pany with sev­eral ini­tia­tives. He spoke about chal­lenges and prospects of the com­pany. Ex­cerpts:

Rural & Marketing - - COVER STORY -

As Di­rec­tor (Mar­ket­ing), you had al­ready in­tro­duced sev­eral new ini­tia­tives for the growth of the com­pany, what chal­lenges you faced ini­tially as CMD and how did you over­come those?

There were sev­eral chal­lenges. First of all, there was an ur­gent need to go for mod­erni­sa­tion with au­toma­tion and digi­ti­sa­tion. Av­er­age age of the em­ploy­ees ranged between 56 to 58, hence a large num­ber of peo­ple re­tir­ing every year.

So we fo­cused on in­fus­ing mo­ti­va­tion to ex­ist­ing staff and new re­cruits to adopt mod­ern tools and we im­ple­mented that very ef­fec­tively. Now we fully adopted au­toma­tion and other tech­no­log­i­cal in­no­va­tion and are get­ting rich div­i­dends. Sec­ond ma­jor chal­lenge was cope up with pri­vate sec­tor play­ers which dom­i­nated the agro­chem­i­cal busi­ness with huge im­ports of IPR prod­ucts from China. Now with in­sec­ti­cide reg­u­la­tor Cen­tral In­sec­ti­cide board (CIB) re­strict­ing im­ports, HIL is com­fort­ably push­ing ‘ Make in In­dia’ cam­paign with adding new mol­e­cules and pro­duc­ing off-patented prod­ucts/ so­lu­tion for the farm­ers. Th­ese mea­sures are adding up for rev­enue growth.

How do you see the fi­nan­cial growth of the com­pany?

When I had joined the com­pany cou­ple of years back, though it was not in red but profit was flat and it was go­ing through a tough phase. More­over pres­sure was to do away with DDT which con­trib­utes

nearly 25 per­cent to our to­tal rev­enue. With new ini­tia­tives and in­ter­nal re­forms, the fi­nan­cial health im­proved con­sid­er­ably. For 2016-17, with a turnover of Rs 382 crore, we earned net profit of nearly Rs 3.28 crore and would pay 30 per­cent div­i­dend to the gov­ern­ment. In 2015-16, HIL’s turnover was Rs 334 crore and for 2017-18, our tar­get is to cross Rs 500 crore.

Bet­ter fi­nan­cials, di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion, in­no­va­tions and smart work­ing came be­cause of your wide ex­pe­ri­ence in the agro­chem­i­cals sec­tor, what are your fu­ture plans ?

As I said, the com­pany tar­gets a turnover of Rs 500 crore in the cur­rent fis­cal and fo­cus would be on Pub­lic health and new busi­nesses such as fer­tilis­ers, biopes­ti­cides and or­ganic fer­tilis­ers.

Broadly, HIL busi­ness ver­ti­cals in­clude Pub­lic Health, Agro­chem­i­cals and Seed. We are all set to mar­ket fertliser prod­ucts un­der its own brand name ‘ Ji­van’ and sourc­ing will be done through im­ports and tie-ups with In­dian & global com­pa­nies.

We have signed agree­ments with Na­tional Fer­tilis­ers Ltd (NFL) and Rashtriya Chem­i­cals and Fer­tilis­ers (RCF) to sell and mar­ket their urea in do­mes­tic mar­ket. We have now com­plete crop cy­cle in our prod­uct port­fo­lio- from seed, fertlis­ers to in­sec­ti­cide and HIL will move to next level with very strong pres­ence in this very com­pet­i­tive sec­tor.

What are those break­throughs

We would in­tro­duce new molecule to re­place DDT by April 2018. The new molecule would be safe and in­ter­na­tion­ally patented. Se­condly we would be launch­ing Long Last­ing In­sec­ti­cide Net (LLIN) which is be­ing de­vel­oped at our own Re­search Cen­tre. With LLIN and new molecule, we would be able to phase out DDT. The Net project would be a great help for ru­ral pop­u­lace and we see huge do­mes­tic de­mand for this in­no­va­tive prod­uct which would be af­ford­able.

The HIL’s R&D cen­tre has the Motto as “Green En­vi­ron­ment and Clean En­vi­ron­ment’ and that mo­ti­vates the com­pany to in­no­vate. The Com­pany fo­cuses on development of safe, eco­nom­i­cal and en­vi­ron­ment friendly recipes for the ex­ist­ing pes­ti­cide for­mu­la­tions, to im­prove cost ef­fi­ciency by us­ing lo­cally avail­able in­dige­nous raw ma­te­ri­als and in­erts.

How do you see the growth of Agro­chem­i­cals sec­tor in the coun­try

The Agro­chem­i­cals sec­tor in In­dia is grow­ing at 10 per­cent an­nu­ally. Huge out­lay, ear­marked by the gov­ern­ment this year, for Agri­cul­ture and al­lied sec­tor would also have great im­pact on the growth of the sec­tor. Sale of agro­chem­i­cals are bound to in­crease. More­over, new reg­u­la­tions is­sued by CIB to also push In­dian com­pa­nies in­clud­ing HIL to in­no­vate and em­pha­sise on new in­dige­nous for­mu­la­tions and so­lu­tions and that would boost do­mes­tic pro­duc­tion and im­port will be re­stricted. Over­all, we ex­pect rapid growth of the sec­tor with qual­ity prod­ucts and so­lu­tions.

How­ever, ro­bust check­ing mech­a­nism needs to be put in place by the States to con­trol sale and use of spu­ri­ous crop pro­tec­tion so­lu­tions. Use of spu­ri­ous pes­ti­cides has risen upto 40 per­cent and that is a big chal­lenge. Strin­gent ac­tions need to be taken against those in­volved in the trade of spu­ri­ous prod­ucts.

Farm­ers also need to be ed­u­cated for ju­di­cious use of fer­tilis­ers and pes­ti­cides.

Broadly, HIL busi­ness ver­ti­cals in­clude Pub­lic Health, Agro­chem­i­cals and Seed. We are all set to mar­ket fertliser prod­ucts un­der its own brand name ‘ Ji­van’ and sourc­ing will be done through im­ports and tie-ups with In­dian & global com­pa­nies

SP Mo­hanty Chair­man and Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Hin­dus­tan In­sec­ti­cides Ltd.

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