The Organisation continues to Focus on VOC "voice of our customers”- HOMAG India's Managing Director and Country Head, Mr. Venkataramana Gorti
Strategic options in India and market digitisation, with a special focus on Tapio. You've been nominated as one of "Asia's Top 100 Inspirational Leaders for the year 2022." As the country head of Homag India, how do you intend to keep Homag Group's industry-leading position?
For many decades, HOMAG has been the market leader both globally and in India, and we are confident that we will continue to hold that position. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our customers who have continued to support us through their patronage. Our continued efforts to be a technology leader and our focus on digital solutions will continue to give us this cutting edge. We at HOMAG value VOC (voice of customers) and our business and product strategies continue to address the same. We will continue to focus on our process and system improvements through HGPS 2.0, which helps in serving our customers' needs in a lean and efficient manner in a sustainable manner.
What role has India and the Indian market played in the HOMAG Group in overall growth? Where will the next phase of growth for your company come from?
India has always been an integral part of our global strategies and I am glad to share that, in spite of the pandemic, India has had unprecedented order booking in the past 2 years. In accordance with our strategy, we have invested in a state-of the-art new facility in Bangalore, which will aid in our strategy of adding more products due to our increased capacities. India has started supporting global factories with their sourcing needs. HOMAG India is now also supporting APAC countries for software support as well as after-sales service hotline support.
What initiatives does HOMAGS have in place to extend its network of dealers, distributors, and experience centres across India in order to ensure consistent product availability and a quality experience?
We already have our sales partners across India, and they have been our extended hands to serve our customers. I take this opportunity to thank all our partners and look forward to their continued support. We have our experience centre at our main facility in Bangalore, which caters to the customer experience and will continue to do so. Our focus on quality as well as reliability is something that is never ever compromised at HOMAG and continues to be our biggest strength and a huge differentiator in the market.
As you are aware, there is a significant global challenge in terms of supply chain availability, costs, and predictability across all industries, and HOMAG is not immune despite our best efforts. For us at HOMAG, this challenge is compounded with our unprecedented order book in 2021 and this trend has continued in 2022 too. We are putting all our focus and efforts into overcoming this challenge, and one factor which can definitely help in managing the supply chain is if the prognosis for market demand is more predictable.
Parallel to what we witness in Europe and China, the market is moving toward high volume, low margin. In terms of technology, optimization, and other aspects, how does Homag propose to facilitate this shift?
HOMAG solutions have the unique ability to cater to both high mix, low volume demands as well as low mix, high volume requirements of customers, and this is our USP. Our team understands the customer's business model and recommends the right solution to meet their business needs.
Our business solutions, which are enabled with our various software solutions to integrate the entire eco-system and business processes, will be the game changer to make our customers take real-time decisions and improve their profitability. Depending on our customers' business models, investments in our HOMAG iX, Tapio, and other products will be critical to profitability!
In terms of machine costs, how do you anticipate the Bangalore manufacturing facility would help your sales and overall profitability?
Our investment in our new facility is very strategic. This facility will help us to keep adding additional product profiles, serve our HOMAG global needs through exports, as well as support both global and regional functions from India by hiring the best talent available in India.
The woodworking industry is currently experiencing a scarcity of competent operators with an influx of new players, both on a small and large scale. How does Homag, as a major machinery manufacturer, intend to help bridge this gap?
HOMAG has always believed in building the skill-sets in the industry. This need has been accentuated by the growing market and the visible shift to machines from the traditional making of modular furniture. We have our own experience centre where we train the personnel from the industry on a continuous basis to upskill their skills. We are also working very closely with FFSC (Furniture and Fittings Skill Council) on this specific initiative.
How has your product range developed in response to market demands? How innovative and technologically advanced are Homag’s products?
HOMAG has always been a market leader in integrating technology into all our solutions, and we are committed to doing so in the future too. Our business strategies are fully aligned with market needs when it comes to our product strategies and business solutions.
How are the metros and non-metros doing? How do you intend to penetrate into the Country’s tier-II and tier-III cities?
It is very encouraging that the market is growing at a fast clip not only in metros but also in tier-II and tier-III cities. We will continue to reach these markets through our sales partners, digitization, and the strengthening of our sales force.
What opportunities and challenges do you foresee in the Indian market?
The Indian market is poised for the big growth which we have been hearing about for some years, but is probably being experienced on "the ground" for the first time in spite of the pandemic. So opportunities are infinite and, if I may, I will dare to say that "the sky is the limit". Indian customers are more and more targeting not only the Indian market but are exploring exports as a big unexplored opportunity. There is far more acceptance w.r.t. investing in technology, industrial machines, quality, reliability, and the need for partners who can be with the customer in their aggressive growth plans. This is a great opportunity for HOMAG to partner with these
Tapio, HOMAGS proprietary IoT platform, is also available. In India, what is the adoption rate? What are the impediments, if any?
Tapio, as I have openly claimed, is a game changer in terms of business growth and profitability. Tapio is enabled by default on all of our industrial machines, and customers can activate Tapio for a few weeks of "free experience." Customers have begun to use Tapio, and the feedback has been extremely positive. To be honest, we don't see any roadblocks.
Do you see market opportunities emerging as a result of the expansion of HOMAG India's manufacturing facility and demo centers across the country? What role does it play in helping you locate new markets for your exports?
As I mentioned earlier, our new facility will further enhance our exports by adding to current exports with more and more products being developed at HOMAG, India for global requirements.
Are there any new collaborations or initiatives that our readers should look forward to in the near future?
We at HOMAG continue to explore all opportunities for newer opportunities and collaborations, and you can look forward to hearing more and more at the opportune time.
What the customers can expect from HOMAG at IndiaWood 2022?
HOMAG has always made certain that customers receive some new surprises at the IndiaWood exhibition, and IndiaWood 2022 would be no exception! Customers will be able to experience it in person in June of 22!