What are the international developments in waterproofing solutions and how these are being incorporated in the product stream of Chowgule Koster (India) Construction Chemicals Pvt Ltd?
World over waterproofing solutions are viewed as an integral and important part of any construction, be it infrastructure, industrial, commercial or residential. In this regard, there are many products introduced successfully worldwide that are yet to find a broad based acceptance in India. Products for rendering oil contaminated floorings oil free which is a pre – requisite for laying of epoxy floorings, Polyurethane injection resin based systems for a range of below ground level water seepage and structure strengthening problems, and others like long term solutions for rising damp problems in walls, and polymer modified acid resistant mortars are either very new or unheard of in India. These new age products are based on the latest technology on offer and Koster Bauchemie AG of Germany, through its JV company in India, CKICCPL, is working on bringing this range to India. This is apart from the numerous products that have been successfully introduced to the Indian market.
Tell us something about the company, its overseas collaborative arrangements, its manufacturing facilities in India, including the product range.
CKICCPL is a joint venture, between Chowgule Industries Pvt.Ltd, (A Chowgule Group Company) and Koster Bauchemie AG of Germany. Koster, established in 1972, is based in Aurich, Germany and is currently operating in 40 countries worldwide providing a complete range of waterproofing solutions and also solutions for repair and rehabilitation of concrete structures. A modern and high end technical R&D centre, in Aurich, is the nerve centre for providing new products for its world markets and customers.CKICCPL has its production facility in Goa. The products are moved through a network of offices in Mumbai, Goa, and Bangalore and the operations currently cover Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Kerala. The product range currently includes cement – based crystalline based systems, Polyurethane based injection systems, concrete repair and rehabilitation system, rising damp system, and system for arresting aggressive and non–aggressive water seepages and leakages. There is also a range of DIY products for the retail segment that is being currently worked on.
What are the various activities and application areas of the products manufactured by the Company?
The CKICCPL business plan covers the segments, like, Projects, Applicator Sales ,and Retail Sales. The Project division executes projects which are managed by an in–house project team. This team comprises trained engineers, supervisors and skilled workers capable of executing and providing waterproofing solutions for even complex waterproofing problems. Projects are currently being executed in Mumbai, Pune, Surat, Goa, Karwar, and Bangalore. An applicator network covers the Southern states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala, Maharashtra, Goa, and Gujarat. The applicator network is an extension of the projects division and is made up of specifically trained sub-contractors who cover smaller towns within the state. A retail network is currently set up in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala. Starting with a project division in 1999, this has now established itself as a efficient and reliable company capable of executing complex and challenging waterproofing jobs. This division also provides the back up and technical support to the applicator and retail segments.
What are major projects in India where company’s products have been successfully applied and the most challenging assignment undertaken?
CKICCPL has successfully completed numerous waterproofing projects in many parts of the country. Some of our more challenging jobs that have been completed to the fullest satisfaction of our customers are waterproofing of a Chlorine Dioxide tank for the paper industry in Gujarat, sealing of active leakages in underground subways in Mumbai for the Indian Railways, providing long term solutions to sealing of surface crack in buildings at the Seabird project at Karwar. At the Bhatsa Nagar dam in Maharashtra, the Koster range was used to provide substantial relief to leaking monoliths. One the largest basements in Mumbai covering a total area of more than 1.25 lac sqm is currently being waterproofed using the Koster range. Many structures in Delhi area facing the problem of rising damp along the walls from the ground water has been effectively treated and arrested using Koster products. The Bombay Stock Exchange, the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Mumbai, the Ammonia Storage tanks for the Fertilizer industry, the Seabird project in Karwar are some of the other projects where the Koster range has been successfully used.
How the company looks to Indian market and its plans to strengthen its presence in the country with its distribution and service network to garner more market share in the developing market of construction chemicals?
At CKICCPL the focus is on providing quality products and solution to the Indian customer. At the first stage when the company started its operations in 1999 with a project division with its own contracting teams. This helped the company to learn first hand about the application techniques and also the efficacy of the Koster products in Indian conditions. Once the customer confidence had been established through successful execution and completion of large waterproofing projects, the company moved to setting up an applicator network in Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Goa. This is now being expanded to the four southern states. Currently, the company has introduced products specifically for the retail segment, through a network of distributors in the four southern states. This expansion will continue to the northern and the eastern regions of India. To complement the company’s expansion, Koster Bauchemie will continuously introduce new age and modern waterproofing solutions apt for the Indian market.
How over the years, the Company has evolved itself to be a specialist in waterproofing and related aspects catering to the varied needs of civil construction?
From its inception, the company has focused on quality products and application to our customers. This has been the single and most important factor in establishing the company as an efficient and reliable waterproofing contractor capable of finding solutions to complex waterproofing problems. Our wide range of products gives us the advantage of providing solutions to almost every type of waterproofing problem. The Koster presence in 40 countries provides us with a database of references of jobs completed which at many times provide solutions to previously unsolved waterproofing problems.
Waterproofing area seems to be an area most neglected in civil engineering. How is CKICCPL campaigning to create the desired awareness about the right product and its right application as a service to the industry?
Yes, It is true that waterproofing in India has been neglected in civil engineering for many years. This could be attributed to the market being seller driven. Today this scenario has changed and the buyer has rightly been demanding a better product. Further contractors and developers are more sensitive to these expectations and are currently going for better products and also applications. Today, in most areas and mainly in the metros new methods of waterproofing with the new age products are being asked for and effective application is being looked for. CKICCPL has from the outset entered the market with good quality products and application. Its campaign to maintain this comes from our quality work. Regular technical seminars for architects, consultants and contractors are held regularly in all our markets. With the range of waterproofing solution available with us we can confidently cater to any kind of waterproofing problem today. Our world–class R&D centre at Aurich, Germany will continue to churn out quality products in the future as well.
What is Company’s focus on research and development and quality systems placed and training Of applicators in the usage and application of range of products manufactured?
As mentioned earlier with our world– class R&D centre at Aurich, Germany our focus is on introducing high quality products for the waterproofing and the concrete repair and rehabilitation industry. This high stress on quality goes down to our contracting teams where regular team building and on–site workshops are carried out to ensure that this quality standard is maintained down the line. Further to man–made errors our focus on mechanization wherever possible is a high priority. The applicator network and the retail network undergo regular training programs. Further the appointment process is stringent and selection is done after detailed scrutiny. CKICCPL is committed to provide its customers with environment–friendly and high quality waterproofing solutions.