Working on innovation is an upstream process: Kelachandra Veneer Industries
In which market segments do you operate? Where do you believe the greatest demand exists?
With woodwork, we operate in two markets, consisting of: projects and residential. Both have had decent demand in the last year, but we forecast greater demand in the residential market space.
What types of wood species do you utilize for your building materials? What are the qualities of various wood species in terms of quality and performance? How has the integration of Canadian wood species benefitted your company's growth?
We work with a lot of plantation teak and Canadian yellow cedar currently. They are both very durable for various architectural uses. In India, beyond timber that is strong and durable, termite resistance is something of high value.
The integration of Canadian wood species has benefitted us the most by giving us a sense of purpose and value using sustainable timber. This in turn gives our customers a feel-good factor by understanding their contribution to using sustainable building materials.
What is the current global trend in wood industry? Is there a shift in consumer demand that you've noticed in the market?
One of the current global trends in the wood industry is all sorts of engineered wood as a main stream architectural product.
Timber is usually used as a luxury product in architecture. With continued product engineering and manufacturing techniques, it has helped position timber as the right choice with better functionality and also at the right value to the customer.
One of the demands that we have noticed in the architectural space is the shift from carpentry made to factory made products that some ready to fit on site.
In the sphere of innovation, how do you see competition? How much room for progress in woodworking equipment do you think there is?
Innovations are a great way to catch up with global markets or get ahead of competition. Today, the world is getting to be a much smaller space, and if you are not innovating, then you are already behind in your market.
For us, innovation is an upstream process of working closely with the great raw-materials suppliers, machinery manufacturers, and manufacturing technology partners.
In today’s fast developing world, just working with machinery equipment partners is not sufficient to get the complete spin on innovation. It’s a whole eco-system that is required.
What are some customer segments that you would like to strongly focus on over the next 1-2 years?
We will be working closely with residential woodwork, which covers interior and exterior products. We hope to offer our products as boutique turnkey solutions for residential woodwork.
What is the current state of metros and non-metros?
Most of our business is focused on metros. Having said that, we do have some very interesting projects coming up from a lot of non-metros as well. These markets cannot be ignored any more.
What are the current geographic regions that you serve, and where do you anticipate the highest demand? Which additional regions do you consider as having potential and would wish to enter?
We are currently catering to South India and anywhere within a one-night drive of Bangalore where we can provide sales and support.
Probably the next market we would like to enter is North India. We have a lot of potential enquiries from there at the moment.
The demand for home renovation products has surged. What kind of development have you’ve seen in product trends?
This is a great question, and there is so much to talk about in this space. In short, with families all staying in close quarters, we have seen developing needs for soundproofing and better privacy options.
I also see a need for a more elevated selection/choice as a requirement.
Has your product line evolved significantly? Are there any extensions to your product line?
With woodwork, we have put our bet on products that appeal to a market that has slightly evolved and customers yearning for something better engineered.
For an architect, our current product line has many possible extensions, with indoor and outdoor woodwork offered as integrated together.
On the demand side, how do you anticipate the market for wood as a construction material evolving? What are some of the important areas where you think wood will become more popular?
This market will continue to grow in India with a lot of initiatives around timber as an evolving architectural and building material choice. With the use of sustainable sources, timber will continue to be there for a very long time, and this will automatically drive a lot of new product introductions. It will become more popular as a preferred material to blend nature into spaces. It is also very exciting to see new companies come up in the last 5–7 years and also some new startups basing their business around new age timber products involving furniture, system windows, wooden houses and architectural elements.
Director at Kbros Aristo Pvt. Ltd,
Partner Kelachandra Veneer Industries
& partner at Kelveneers Timber systems