L&T—On to A New Plane of Achievements
"The Larsen & Toubro is known for engineering and innovations. Together these qualities carry L&T through exciting opportunities and into a promising future. Undertaking challenging projects in India and abroad are a matter of routine for the company whether it is engineering, innovation or infrastructure development... The E&C has always been the core business of company. The L&T has set an ambitious target of 20-25% growth in our construction business's Order Inflow for 2009-10," says Mr K. V. Rangaswami, President, Construction and Member Board–L&T in an interview with S.A.Faridi.

The company's E&C businesshas driven its performance. How much the big-ticket construction related projects and reduction in commodity prices leading to increase margins have contributed to this turn around. What has been the growth in order inflow in construction business during 2008-09, including the share of international orders? How much growth intake the company expects during 2009–10?
The E&C business has always been the core of L&T. Close to 85% of our revenue comes from E&C business. Consciously we have moved towards execution of large cap construction projects over the last few years. Keeping the management focus on fewer projects helps in timely delivery, better quality and enhanced customer satisfaction apart from improved utilization of resources. We had an impressive 44% growth in the Order Inflow of our construction business for the year 2008–09. The latter half of last financial year witnessed squeeze in private Capex and projects were hard to come by. The current year is expected to be more challenging and projects will start to roll out once the credit situation eases and the newly formed Government kick starts investments in a big way. Despite this macro environment, we have kept an ambitious target of 20-25% growth in our construction business’s Order Inflow for 2009-10.

Over the period L&T has built finest highways, expressways, bridges, longest flyovers, highest viaducts, water supply systems, massive concrete structures and miles of macadam, and energy projects across the country. Is it possible to quantify highways and expressways projects in road lengths? At present in how many BoT projects the company is engaged in different parts of the country?
The total length of road completed is 1806 Kms which includes 71 km of expressway, 83 km of 6-lane highway, 800 km of 4-lane highway, 752 km of state highway, overseas –100 km (Sudan).

Our exclusive list of major and standalone projects in the category of elevated structures (Bridges, Elevated corridors, flyovers and viaducts) crosses 20 projects, and apart from number of major / minor bridges as part of our road projects.

At present we have four BoT projects for a total length of 500 Kms in hand and 3 Bridge projects under BoT are under execution.

The L&T is emerging as one of the strong players in development and construction of Metro rail systems, airports expansion and modernizationand ports up-gradation through JV route. Please name the companies with which L&T has forged joint ventures for these projects? What are the works already executed and the current status of the on ongoing projects?
Forging alliance with leading International players helps us get access to latest technologies, enhance our project management capabilities and exposure to contracts management know-how for large cap projects. We had both business JVs and technological partners. Some of them are: Hochtief GmBH for Ports, Dywidag, Strabag, Samsung, Shimizu and SUCG for Metros, Scomi for Monorail, Siemens, Woodhead, MeinHardt, HoK for Airports.

Our completed projects include Seabird (Naval base at Karwar), Breakwater and pump house for Shell LNG Storage terminal at Hazira, Delhi Metro–Phase I, Bangalore, and Hyderabad International airports.

Some of our on going projects are: Port facilities at Dhamra, Delhi Metro–Phase II, International airports at Delhi and Mumbai, Monorail.

The L&T has a strong presence in the GCC market. What are the important projects in hands at presentand company’s future plans to consolidate its position in the Gulf, Oman and other countries to garner more international revenues?
The company presence in Gulf is in 3 business sectors including Hydrocarbon, Power Transmission & Distribution, Buildings and Urban Infrastructure.

We execute residential towers and villas for leading developers like Nakheel, Maximus group of companies, Dubai sports city etc. Multiple substations and transmission line projects in and around Abu Dhabi / Al-Ain in UAE and across multiple locations in Oman.

The Company continues to focus on Gulf by forging alliances for enhancing capabilities and to increase scale of operations. The business prospects for the Infrastructure, Power Transmission and distribution businesses are promising. We have initiated various actions to consolidate our position in UAE and Oman to strengthen our presence. We are on the way to revitalize our JV Companies in Qatar and Saudi by forging new alliances with reputed companies.

Tell us something about your HRD initiatives, like establishing training facilitiesacross the country to impart construction skills and also induct best engineering talent at the entry levelto ward off manpower crunch?
Our HRD initiatives revolve around leadership development for middle /senior management levels, functional and soft skills training for engineers/managers and vocational training for skilled workmen.

We have training institutes at Chennai, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Delhi, and Ahmedabad to train people on various construction skills. This initiative significantly support us in meeting our growing skilled workmen needs.

We follow a rigorous selection process to select right candidates for entry level i.e. Trainees (Graduates/Post Graduates/ Diplomas). We give them on-the-job comprehensive training for 15 to 24 months and make them thorough in systems, procedures and functional aspects.Our leadership development programmes focus on development of leadership qualities, succession planning and career planning.

What is the thought behind L&T's new tag line "It's all about Imagineering." How does holistically it reflect the diversified image and status as a global player in infrastructure space?
It's all about Imagineering' is new tagline coined for L&T. Imagineering is engineering coupled with imagination. This is something new, different, dynamic and daring and it leverages L&T's intrinsic character to launch itself onto a new plane of achievements consistently. L&T is known for engineering and innovations. Together these qualities carry L&T through exciting opportunities and into a promising future. This radically different tagline has in fact taken the company’s aspirations into the international market with global benchmarks.

While L&T makes the use of this tagline, the Construction Division of L&T in tune with the nature of business, its involvement also makes use of another tagline "We Build the Projects that Build the Nation" to establish its strongholds in Infrastructure and Nation building activities. Both taglines reiterate that the challenging projects in India and abroad are a matter of routine for L&T whether it is engineering, innovation or infrastructure development.

L&T appears to be quite optimistic about future push in infrastructure and is aiming at achieving 20-25% growth in top line in the next 2-3 years. What enabling business milieu the company looks to the new Government in terms of reforms in infrastructure sector, financial sector including rationalization in tax regime, compatible with new emerging national and global business environment?
The clear mandate in favour of UPA is welcomed by all industries. It has infused fresh hope into the industries at a time when global economic scenario is not so conducive. The UPA Government has taken various initiatives post global slowdown to increase credit flow into the market. Though the outcome was not as effective, we could see improvement in confidence level of the industry.

Infrastructure, particularly construction sector grew at over 13-14% CAGR during the last 4 to 5 years. At the present economic juncture, Infrastructure is seen as the major hope to boost the confidence level as well as economic growth. We believe that the Government will continue its thrust on Infrastructure.

The major improvements that we foresee are: increased availability of affordable credit for projects through PPP route, faster fructification of Government projects, active support from Government on project approvals/ clearances (MoEF etc.) and ROW issues.
Jal Shakti Restoring Water To The People of India
Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Union Minister, Jal Shakti, shares with S.A.Faridi & Maria R, the challenges and initiatives being taken by the ministry towards effective water management and availability of safe drinking water for India’s burgeoning

Read more ...

Dam Safety Society: Scientific, Technological & Systematic Management
Dams are critical infrastructure for storing water for a variety of uses like drinking, irrigation, power generation, industrial, domestic, and recreational uses. Managing the precious water assets requires systematic management and

Read more ...

Powerscreen: Strong & Reliable Electric & Hybrid Crushing Machines
Powerscreen is actively engaging with its customers to glean information on their job requirements and suggestions, and accordingly making enhancements in its products like Electric & Hybrid Crushing Machines, making them more

Read more ...

Sany India: Batch Mix Plants, Excavators, Cranes & Pilig Rigs
This achievement is a testament to SANY India’s commitment to provide high–quality, reliable and innovative equipment to the Indian market. Surpassing 30,000 machines operating across India fills us with immense pride. This significant milestone

Read more ...

Paving The Way for More Efficient And Timely Construction & Manufacturing Processes
Transformation of the infrastructure industry is vital for mitigation of climate challenges and the Blue-Green infrastructure offers a sustainable and self-healing solution for the problem at hand, informs Nikhil Jain, CEO, Qubik Group

Read more ...

MCOS Global: Solutions to Reduce Project Delays & Achieve Sustainability
Subhashis Kar, Managing Director, MCOS Global presents possible solutions and measures to effectively reduce delays in infra construction projects and bring sustainability in urban developments. MCOS Global is a prominent player

Read more ...

EXCON 2023: Showcasing Construction Industry’s Resilience and Vibrancy
I am sure that a lot of excitement and enthusiasm is building up for the coming week when EXCON 2023, one of the largest construction equipment and technology trade fairs in the world, will open its door to welcome all the

Read more ...

Shri Gadkari discusses on road construction policies, technologies, challenges
In a prelude to EXCON 2023, Hon’ble Minister Shri Nitin Gadkari, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Government of India, discusses with S. A. Faridi,Group Managing Editor, various aspects of road construction including policies

Read more ...

ICEMA: equipment industry growth prospect, challenges, training etc
V. Vivekanand, President - ICEMA and Managing Director - Caterpillar India, shares his views on the growth prospects of India’s construction equipment industry and the need for it to embrace higher technology standards to solidify its position

Read more ...

BAI working on construction technologies, sustainability, standardization
According to S. Narsimha Reddy, President, Builders’ Association of India, modern construction technologies, use of sustainable building materials and standardisation are important for achieving project completion timelines

Read more ...

COAOI creating favorable environment for crane rental companies
COAOI engages with the government and relevant stakeholders to promote a more conducive business environment so that crane rental companies can operate efficiently and contribute to the nation’s infrastructure development while maintaining safety

Read more ...

CERA: rental co. instrumental in construction equipment industry growth
Rentals are paving the way forward for the construction equipment industry, and to ensure long-term resilience and growth, we are championing initiatives like unity, standardization, and commitment to fair practices

Read more ...

JCB India: Hi-tech Excavators, Telehandlers, Backhoe Loaders & AWP
JCB is a leading construction equipment manufacturer with a comprehensive range of products that include mini excavators, skid steer loaders, telehandlers backhoe loaders, access platforms, compactors, excavators

Read more ...

Volvo CE: Time-Tested Excavators, Compactors & Asphalt Pavers
Volvo CE started its India operations in 1998 to manufacture crawler excavators, soil compactors, and asphalt pavers. In 2022, it introduced time-tested quality machines like the EC300DL BH, custom-built for quarries, and Volvo EC480D

Read more ...

Wirtgen: Advanced Road Construction, Crushing & Screeing Equipment
With its various product brands WIRTGEN, VÖGELE, HAMM, KLEEMANN and BENNINGHOVEN, the WIRTGEN GROUP covers the entire road construction process chain from processing, mixing, paving, compacting, and road rehabilitation to

Read more ...

Schwing Stetter: Top Quality Concrete & Road Construction Equipment
Schwing Stetter India is a leading provider of a wide range of top-quality products for use in concreting, road building, earthmoving, power projects, high-speed rails, metro rails, and other mega projects. The company invests in developing

Read more ...

Puzzolana: High-Capacity & Hybrid Crawler Crushers, Screens & sanders
Puzzolana is adopting the latest technologies and bringing sustainability in its construction equipment. The company has optimized its production processes by incorporating robotics in painting and assembly, with the aim of achieving

Read more ...

Tata Hitachi: Hydraulic Excavators, Backhoe Loaders & Wheel Loaders
The product lineup of Tata Hitachi India includes a wide range of excavators, ranging from 2-ton mini excavators (including construction and mining variants) to models as hefty as 800 tons, which incorporate the excavator range

Read more ...

ACE High performance Mobile, Truck, Tower Cranes & Backhoe loaders
ACE is gearing up for Excon 23 to showcase its latest innovations, engage with industry leaders, and reinforce its position as a trailblazer in the field. Renowned for its Mobile and Tower Cranes, the company prioritizes sustainability

Read more ...

L&T's fuel efficient Excavators, Compactors, Wheel Loaders
Komatsu and L&T Construction & Mining Machinery are delivering top-notch products using the latest technologies and based on an understanding of customer needs. Its advanced models include electric Hydraulic Excavators and

Read more ...