‘New and innovative products is hallmark of Murrelektronik’
An interview with Chetan TA, Managing Director – India, Murrelektronik Pvt Ltd.
Murrelektronik Pvt Ltd
Electronics in the Cabinet, interfaces and I/O systems
You have a long association with Murrelektronik even before the launching of the Indian subsidiary in April 2017. How is the company’s performance in India?
When I took over responsibility of starting Murrelektronik in 2012, we were in dire straits. Though the products sold by an existing distributor were well received, due to lack of post-sales support and not passing on pricing advantage offered by Germany to market, the growth was stunted. It was tough initial few months as I had to look out for revamping operations and getting aboard new distributors, and we succeeded in doing so within 6 months and have never looked back ever since. From a meagre Rs 90 lakh sale in 2013 to have reached nearly Rs 15 crore in 2017 is a growth path that speaks for itself.
The Murrelektronik ‘Pyramid’ has four distinct product lines of complimentary products. How is the business distributed among these?
The core business of Murr has been the connectivity solutions and that still forms 35% of top line. The IO vertical has been steadily growing in popularity and forms nearly 25% of the business. The power segment with our intelligent Power Distribution device MICO has been able to capture the market well and gives us 20% of share while the panel interface has its own distinct advantages and monopoly thereby completing the balance 20%.
It is a highly competitive market. What is the USP of the company?
To put it in just two words, “Decentralised communication”. We believe in bringing all the products out on field than confine it to a Panel. IP67 fieldbus installations are our core area of strength and we have capitalised on this very well over the years.
The automotive industry is one of the major customers with extensive engagement. How significant is this business globally and in India?
Automotive still forms the bulk of our business vertical and plays a very significant role in our R&D too since new requirements coming from the industry are tested in our Labs in Germany and upon successful trials with our Automotive customers are then introduced to the larger market segment. Even in India, 40% of our business comes from Automotive OEMs and their Tier 1 & 2 suppliers. Given that most of the countries are planning to go green and make it mandatory for vehicles to turn electric by 2030, we’ll have to wait and see how it will impact the industry as a whole and for suppliers like us in future. Am sure we will come up with new innovative products for a greener earth given our company colour is Green as well and motto is to go green.
What were the recent developments and innovations in Murrelektronik products for the smart factory? Any new product launches?
We have launched a new MICO Pro power distribution modules and a new diagnostic gateway that enables the information to be carried through cloud and helps is real time diagnostics of down time sitting away from the plant.
The industry is today working on cloud based platforms and also dealing with a host of security concerns. What is the Murrelecktronik approach here?
As I mentioned above, most of our new development is taking on Industry 4.0 concept and on cloud based platforms given the future seems to be there. There are however issues on Security that come up with upgradation of technology and am sure our R&D is looking into the aspect working closely with the Software providers in enhancing security features.
Any breakthrough product launch that made a difference in the company’s five decades old history?
From the very beginning, new and innovative products have been the hallmark of Murrelektronik, and have given us the brand value and customer satisfaction. The Suppressor module was where it all started way back in 1970s and then with Valve Plugs, MICO and now to the latest IO modules, have all contributed in reinventing the company time and again, remaining on top of the market requirements.
How do you see the Indian operations growing? Is it just a sales & service operation or any kind of value addition taking place?
The Indian operations have seen a steady growth since 2012 and from just being a Liaison Office to formation of 100% subsidiary within 4 years is the kind of importance that our market holds for Murrelektronik. Right now, we are focusing on our vision and mission 2020 to reach Rs 50 crore turnover and then start planning for the next big step of manufacturing through Make in India Platform by early next decade.
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