Volvo Penta Poised for Double Digit Growth

Prabhakaran S
"Volvo Penta has a significant presence in India and is operating for over a decade. Headquartered at Bangalore, the company is supplying engines for Genset, Marine, and Versatile applications. In India, more than 9000 Volvo Penta installation are in place with most of them operating continuously for years. Participation in Excon'09 was a great opportunity for exhibiting our products among the other equipment manufacturers. Volvo Penta is poised to grow with double digit growth," says Mr. Prabhakaran.S Vice President, Industrial & Marine Power Systems, Volvo India Pvt. Ltd. in an interview with S.K.Khanna during Excon'09.

Please introduce your company to our readers, its important business areas, manufacturing facilities, and broad product range.

Volvo Penta is a part of the AB Volvo Group and is one of the leading producers of industrial and marine engines. The company has over a million units operating in more than 180 markets worldwide. Volvo Penta has a significant presence in India and is operating here for over a decade based at Bangalore, supplying engines for Genset, Marine, and Versatile applications. Volvo Penta manufacturing facilities are at Vara, Lexington, Skövde, Göteborg, Köping, Lyon and Wuxi. The product range includes 85-630 kVA for genset application, 166-770 hp for industrial applications, 10-900 hp for marine leisure and commercial application and 60-480 kWe for marine auxiliary and emergency gensets.

How has the company been performing in India in the last one decade in terms of product installations on important business areas?

In India, more than 9000 Volvo Penta installation are in place, with most of them operating continuously for years. Some of the applications where Volvo Penta engines have been used in great numbers are for power generation, material handling equipment, drill rigs, cranes, forklift, dewatering pumps, leisure boats, work boats, RIBS, Patrol boats, Fishing trawlers etc.

What are the important technical services rendered by the company to help customers to use its products effectively?

Volvo Penta parts and service support are available throughout the life of every engine. Qualified service from trained technicians is available all over India, througha well established 57 service outlets operated bydedicated dealer network. Irrespective of the location of the equipment, end-user will always have access to local Volvo Penta support. We are not just selling an engine, but also establishing a long-term relationship with our customers adding value to their business. Volvo Penta has made it easy for customer to select the right service agreement for their business from a program of regular engine inspections to a comprehensive repair and maintenance program that removes the need for an on-site engineering workshop. Volvo Penta dealers offer customers different levels of services, all with the same level of renowned Volvo Penta care.

How is the company’s product range safe environmentally?

Since the beginning of the 1970s, the “care for environment” has been an integral part of our business together with safety and quality - one of Volvo’s core values. Volvo Penta has taken concrete steps to reduce the environmental impacts. We want to clearly communicate our leading position when it comes to the environment. “The Volvo Penta Green Commitment” makes this simpler and clearer. Our philosophy is to meet challenges with new and innovative ways of powering industrial and marine equipment. All of the Volvo Penta manufacturing facilities are ISO 14001 certified. All of the major suppliers are ISO 14001 certified and 96% of employees at our manufacturing facilities work in accordance with ISO 14001 standards.

What has been the impact of ongoing recession on the business and technical and managerial measures initiated by the company to ward–off the impact and stay afloat in the market?

In times of anxiety and uncertainty, people look for security and reliability. This is how we function. Our propensity to take risks is reduced and we tend to choose what is safe rather than what is unsafe. This psychology also offers Volvo Penta some important business opportunities as we tackle the financial worry and the market downturn. It is at times like these that the market forces sift out the future losers from the winners. Weak companies will disappear, while strong companies become even stronger. Volvo Penta belongs to the second of these categories and we are emerging from thiscrisisin an even stronger position.

We are taking the advantage of our size and our uniquely strong brand so that we can be regarded as a safe port in the financial storm. We are noticing the fact that our customers prefer to choose the safety rather than the unsafe to strengthen our market positions still further. Thetop priority for Volvo Penta is to manage the bottom cycle without sacrificing the introduction of new products.

How do you look at your participation in Excon 2009? Any significant development or major breakthroughs which you would like to share with us.

It's a great opportunity for us to showcase our products among the other equipment manufacturers. A move that shows the growing importance of the Indian Infrastructure Industry and equally important to us to increase awareness of our products and brand in this segment. A good level of interest was shown to our products by the equipment manufacturers and also by the end customers.

How do you envisage the pace of growth of Volvo Penta in India in the next 2-3 years, particularly garnering more share in the market to expected new targets?

Volvo Penta is poised to grow even further, with double digits growth. We will continue to enlarge our offerings to our customers.

A word about Volvo Adventure Scheme’ as a mark of Corporate Social Responsibility being discharged by the company.

The Volvo Adventure is an environmental award programme organized annually by Volvo and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to recognize and reward practical environmental action being taken by young people in their local community. It seeks to promote environmental innovation and aspirations among young people aged 13 to 16 years from around the world. The competing teams must constitute between two to five young people with one adult as the supervisor. The programme was launched in 2002 and is still running for the past eight consecutive years.

NBMCW January 2010

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