Everest Industries has been a professionally managed company. Its strength is to build on product development, new product applications, innovation and brand building. The superior attributes of its product are preferred by the domestic and foreign customers. The company has established a new plant at Bhagwanpur in Roorkee to manufacture roofing sheets and cement boards. Everest undertook a major diversification programme by setting up its first plant of pre-engineered steel buildings at Bhagwanpur. "We will be continuously capitalizing on the various opportunities in the infrastructure sector. We are now contemplating to set up a new roofing plant in eastern India and a new pre-engineered steel building plant in western or southern India. Our product range now is quite wide and we wish to develop new applications for the existing range of products. During 2009-10, company recorded a sales turnover of Rs. 653 crore and recorded an increase of 23% compared to previous year," said Mr. M.L. Gupta Managing Director, Everest Industries Limited in an interview with S.K. Khanna.
At the outset, please accept NBM&CW's congratulations on winning CIDC prestigious Vishwakarma Awards for 2010. It would be interesting for the industry to know the enabling work ethos and value systems created to qualify for these Awards unfazed by current slump.
Since its inception in 1934, Everest Industries Limited has been a professionally managed company. Our company has enjoyed a high corporate image and good corporate governance. Our core values are:
- Maintain the highest standards of professionalism
- To be principled, ethical and fair in all our dealings
- Adapting ourselves to stay a step ahead of competition
- To acquire and apply leading edge expertise in all aspects of our business
- Give each person a room to contribute and grow
What different steps and strategies the company adopted during this recessionary period to ward off pessimism within the company and in the market place?
We believe that people are our real assets. We had communicated to all our employees, dealers, suppliers and other stakeholders that we would together deal with the economic downturn. We had given assurance to all our employees that company is not contemplating any reduction of manpower during these difficult times.
We also reprioritize our targeted market segments and focused vigorously on the rural sector. Indian rural market is growing as the purchasing power of the farmers is increasing due to the higher minimum support price (MSP) as well as the various rural development schemes undertaken by the government such as NAREGA, rural housing schemes and rural infrastructure development programme.
Our company continued to build on product development, new product applications, innovation and brand. We also continued with our internal training programme and the external skill development programme for artisans, carpenters, roof layers and dealers.
Everest Industries had set up new manufacturing facilities for cement products at Bhagwanpur in Roorkee during 2007-08 and pre-engineered steel building manufacturing facalities during 2008-09. This resulted in recording a sales turnover of Rs. 530 crore during 2008-09 an increase of 86% compared to previous year, inspite of a year of economic downturn. In 2009-10, company recorded a sales turnover of Rs. 653 crore an increase of 23% compared to previous year.
Please tell us about the Everest Industries evolution to reach the premier position it enjoys today offering world-class building solutions to country's construction, industrial and commercial infrastructure development.
Everest Industries Limited began its journey 76 years ago. The first plant of the company was established in 1934 at Kymore in Madhya Pradesh. The objective of the company was to provide rural shelter at an affordable price. The company's second manufacturing facility was established in 1938 at Kolkata and the third plant was set up at Coimbatore.
As the demand for our products was increasing we did a major expansion at Kymore Works in 1957 and another major expansion at Kolkata Works in 1961. In 1981, we established a full fledged R&D Centre.
In 1992, the company achieved a major breakthrough and commenced utilization of fly ash as part of the National Mission to utilize the fly ash, a waste material of the coal based thermal power stations.
During 1993, company launched environment–friendly boards a substitute of wood based product for partition, paneling, ceiling and cladding applications. During 1994 company's most modern manufacturing facility was established at Lakhmapur in Nashik. In 2005 our Podanur plant at coimbatore commenced commercial production of hitech roofing for industrial application. In 2006, the new range of products such as heavy duty boards and solid wall panels were introduced in the market for a variety of applications including the pre-fabricated housing.
During the year 2007 and 2008, several major initiatives were undertaken. The company established a new plant at Bhagwanpur in Roorkee to manufacture roofing sheets and cement boards. Everest Industries also undertook a major diversification programme by setting up its first plant of pre-engineered steel buildings at Bhagwanpur, Roorkee.
Podanur Works at Coimbatore was our first manufacturing facility to receive ISO 9000 certification in 1999. Since then all our manufacturing facilities are 1SO 9000 and ISO 14000 certified. The two recent factories at Bhagwanpur in Roorkee are going to be ISO certified soon. We are now contemplating to set up a new roofing plant in eastern India and a new pre-engineered steel building plant in western or southern India. Our product range now is quite wide and we wish to develop new applications for the existing range of products.
In roofing solutions segment, your company has contributed one billion sq.mtr of Roofing in India. Given the fact that cement fibre roofing systems are slowly but surely are being replaced by metal products, do you think that cement based material would remain the main work horse in roofing domain in the days to come?
Affordability is an issue in rural India and with the small and medium industries. Our cement roofing sheets are still the preferred choice for farmers as well as for small and medium entrepreneurs. Therefore, cement roofing market will continue to grow with high emphasis on rural development and small and medium scale sector.
However, the cement roofing sheets are no more preferred by the large industrial sector as well as the other customers who are looking for alternative roofing material. We on our part have diversified into the pre-engineered business with the objective to provide factory and warehousing buildings for larger projects. Our strategy to diversify in pre-engineered steel building was to meet demand of industrial, warehousing and infrastructure projects that are growing very rapidly.
We are also providing metal roofing solutions to those individual and institutional customers who wish to install metal roofing only.
Over the year, your company has been able to establish its strong credential in the export of its products through consistence performance in exports to Europe, Africa, Australia and Asia by supplying products beating international quality. What advance quality control and certified manufacturing systems are placed in the company to ensure highest quality and durability standards? How these technical attributes of your products and services are helping the company to establish strong foundation in the national and global market?
Yes, we ensure that our products are of highest quality and durability standards and due to this, we are well established in the overseas markets. At present, we are exporting to about 15 countries and there has been a wide acceptance for our cement boards not only in emerging economies but also in advanced economies such as United Kingdom, Italy, Ireland and Australia. Our products are now specified by the various stakeholders such as architects, interior designers, project management consultants, government agencies and construction companies.
The superior attributes such as thermal and acoustic insulation, fire resistance, moisture resistance, termite proof, impact resistance, long durability and environment–friendly nature of the product are preferred by our customers. This helps us in getting repeat orders from our customers.
We also develop new customers by interacting with them and informing the benefits of using our product. Some of the large applications that we developed for domestic and overseas markets are for airports, sports stadium, malls and super markets and prefabricated housing solutions.
In the overseas market apart from our traditional markets, we are developing new markets in Africa and Latin America. We recently began our exports to Libya.
A word about your market network in the present heterogeneous and diversified national market, also a word about your HRD initiatives to ward off the specter of manpower crunch.
Our distribution network comprises 5000 dealers across the country. These dealers are our most important assets. Through them we distribute our products across 100,000 villages, 600 cities across the length and breadth of the country. Both dealers and Everest Industries are loyal to each other and our partnership has further strengthened over the years.
We help our dealers in the best possible manner and our dealers sweat and toil to serve customers within the vicinity of their establishment.
Our company believes in providing good work culture for employees based on trust and empowerment. There is a strong emphasis on training and development to further enhance the skill set of our employees. The number of hours of training and development programmes is continuously increasing.
Our retention is better than the industry rate because we provide best possible working environment. Further, Everest offers performance incentive and stock options to its employees to partner in its growth.