Mr. TK Ramesh, CEO
Micromatic Machine Tools Pvt. Ltd.
Q.Ace micromatic has gained substantial market share in Indian machine tool industry, please elucidate the success story of the company?
Ace Micromatic Group is India’s largest machine tool conglomerate with a market presence in several countries across Asia, Australia, Middle East, North & South America and Europe. Intent is to provide its customers a one stop shop for all machining needs, the group specializes in the manufacturing of CNC turning, milling and grinding machines along with subsystems like tool turrets, ATC etc. The group offers its customers a wide and comprehensive range of machine to suit a broad spectrum of applications. It also offers turnkey solutions, tooled up options, innovative work holding, Cp/Cpk evaluation, TPM friendly machines and more. Building on its expertise in machine tool manufacturing, the group also offers products to enhance its customer’s productivity through real time machine monitoring and OEE.
Our success can be attributed to our collective ability to convert design’s to making products cost effectively. Looking back at the three decades of our operation, we can confidently say that Micromatic played a key role in nurturing the SSI’s & the SME’s to adopt CNC technology and move towards global quality levels, through providing them with affordable CNC technology and close hand holding. Our customers feel comfortable to work with us and place repeat orders. With an installed base of more than 30000 machines across the globe, we are the largest Machine tools group.
Q.Please brief us about the exports and overseas operations & what are the global alliances that has been made in order to out-front the competition?
We have global market presence of our machines in several countries including United States, Germany, France, UK, Russia, Canada, Brazil, Saudi Arabia and China, etc. We are currently concentrating on the Chinese, South East Asia, Turkey and European markets. We have set up our own offices in China and Germany to cater to the needs of the local customers in the region. In addition to this we have a strong dealership network in other major markets where we have supplied machines. Around 10 % of our sales are through exports and it is increasing year on year. As far as global alliance is concerned, we are a truly Indian company and have been actively “Making In India” since last three decades. All the technology development is done in-house in tune with the changing requirement of our customers. Our product development is in line with the market requirements and enables our customers to produce their components in a cost effective manner.
Q.What are the market prospects for the Ace micromatic products in India and How do you plan to position these products?
We have standard machines and also provide value added products and services to all our customers. Ace Micromatic group companies are uniquely positioned to provide end to end solutions to a large number of industry sectors through its wide and comprehensive range of machines to suit a broad spectrum of applications in Automotive & Auto component, General Engineering, Aerospace & Defence, Energy, Railways, Construction equipment and off road vehicles, Die & Mould, Medical & Orthopaedic implants etc. Starting from process optimization, fixture and work holding solutions, tooling selection, automation and complete prove out, the machines are built to suit the customer needs. In addition we have also expertise in integrating automation solutions through Robotics and gantry system providing an error free and highly productive solution.
Q.Can you brief us about the marketing strategies that were applied in order to stand out in the competition of machine tool industry?
The key differentiator that keeps Ace Micromatic group ahead of the curve is our high productive solutions at competitive price and the unmatched pre sales and post sales application and service support that adds great value to the customers. Our customers are served through the extensive and widely spread sales and service network of Micromatic machine tools the marketing arm of Ace Micromatic group. With 35 plus offices and six technology centers spread across the country, and with a strong team of 550 trained engineers, we believe we are at the door steps of our customers when they need us.
Q.Please elucidate in brief about the Ace micromatic’s infrastructure & What are the measure that are being taken from the product manufacturing to distribution?
Ace Micromatic group is truly powering the growth of the nation through its strong workforce of about 2,400 committed employees across India and more than 120,000 sq mts of built up facility. We have the best in class manufacturing facility for production of Castings and then machining them to the fine accuracy required for building high class machines. The assembly of Jobber series CNC turning centers takes place on Assembly lines which yields very high levels of consistent products. Separate temperature controlled room with automated test beds for the test running and stabilisation of Spindle ensures very high accuracy and life of the spindle. Calibration and measuring equipment of world class standards are available at all production units to ensure thorough testing of our machines to international standards.
Q.Brief us about the R&D and Quality policy for your business?
Design and development is the key strength of Ace Micromatic Group. Some of the core strengths of the group are the rich engineering experience of its leaders, who are considered pioneers in the development of several technologically advanced products and a very strong shared value system. A healthy synergy among the group companies has facilitated cross learning and rapid growth and enabled us to be the front runners in machine tool development. Further, as new developments happen, we bring out products needed for the sector. For eg. Our Government is giving stress on the development of the electronic sector in India through the “Digital India” initiative; we are internally developing new products that will cater to the needs of this sector.
Managing a large organisation and driving sustainable growth requires a strong vision which motivates the people. The twin pillar of Ethics and Values has closely knit the entire team together and paved way for Ace Micromatic group to aspire to be among the Top 25 players in the global machine tool fraternity
Q.Please comment on the current machine tool scenario in India ?
Green shoots of growth are being observed, though the pace of growth is not up to the expectation. Also, as we are beginning to see automotive sales, especially the passenger car segment increasing, the capacity utilisation is also improving. Sooner or later the new investment plans will also kick in. The order book for most of the machine tool manufacturers in the first quarter of the current financial year has been positive, and with the same trend continuing, we should hopefully end with a double digit growth rate.
Q.Could you brief us on Indian & Global perspective of machine tool industry? What are the distinguishing factors?
The key requirement of Quality, Cost & Delivery remains the same whether in India or abroad. Machine performance and reliability are the basic requirement for all manufacturing industries. The major difference in the expectation from the manufacturing industry which ultimately influences the machine tool design also is the way in which the machines are tended. On account of the low cost work force in India, we tend to have higher percentage of machine which perform single function and are generally manually operated or with simple automation. Where as in the European and other countries, due to non-availability of labor, the machines generally tend to be multi-tasking and fully automated.
Q.In your opinion how can the Indian machine tool industry become globally competitive ?
In my opinion, some of the machine tool manufacturers of India are already globally competitive. Not only are they effectively facing the onslaught of foreign machine tool manufacturers in India, rather they are also taking up the challenges on foreign soil. We already have our presence in China and in Europe through our own offices and are regularly selling our products in face of competition from local and other international manufacturers. India can be competitive in the total solutions space as we have competitive engineering strength.
Q.What are the key technological trends that are driving machine tool industry?
Machine tool industries have to learn to be responsive to higher uncertainty and chaos in the market in this new dynamic era. The throughput time has to be cut down in order to be able to deliver to the fast changing needs of the user industry. Rather than stocking and selling manufacturers have to move to the mode of build to the requirement in shorter time in order to be responsive to the changing needs of the market. We at ACE Designers have implemented systems to produce our standard machine within five days and this has helped us to trim our finished goods inventory. A serious effort to show case Life time & life cycle costs and working to reduce it is beginning to happen.
Q.How do your perceive the future of the Indian machine tool industry ?
The future for Indian machine tool industry is very bright for those companies which are willing to keep pace with the changing market needs. India has a large captive market for machine tools and the Make in India initiative will definitely increasing the Manufacturing activity in India. We have the required products to meet the demands of the emerging markets and are also actively creating new products looking at the new growth opportunities that the “Make in India” initiative is throwing at us.
Q.How far the factors like government norms, excise duty, taxation, exim policies are affecting your business?
We all know very well, and have continued to grow our business over the past years irrespective of the government policies and norms. Hopefully with the new focus on Manufacturing and the clearing of the GST bill, things will improve in the coming period.
Q.What are the best possible remedies you can advise in order to maintain the high profitability in the shrinking margins market of India?
There are always cost pressures when the competition is high as many players would be fighting for the same pie. Managing cost to the price pressures is always a challenging act. Working with the customer holistically across the value chain to provide value is a key challenge in tough times
Q14. What is your vision for Ace micromatic?
We at Ace Micromatic have set our goals to be among the top 25 machine tool manufacturers in the world and are moving towards that aim with planned initiatives.
Q.Please address the issues that are affecting the machine tool industry?
Machine tool manufacturers in India have to adopt to Global specification, Aesthetics, Reliability and high end features in order to compete with the imported machines. We have to provide cost competitive solutions to be able to compete. Brand building and local service support is very important, however, we are very strong in this area as we have worked upon these factors even before the competition came in. Availability of local vendors for many of the critical components needed for our Machine tool is a long standing issue. We have to endure longer lead time and price fluctuation as these products are imported. With the dynamic market condition which requires fast deliveries, this becomes a major constraint in quickly meeting the surge demands.
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