Taking Pride in ‘Make in India’

Lars Dithmer,
Managing Director, Alfa Laval (India) Limited
With a stable government in place, India seems to be on a high growth trajectory. Infrastructure spend of USD 1 trillion will see an addition of another USD 600 million which has created a positive sentiment in the process industry. Mittravinda Ranjan interacted with Lars Dithmer, Managing Director, Alfa Laval (India) Limited about his thoughts on the present Indian market, industries that have propelled the country’s growth, challenges he foresees among other aspects.

You have come at the time when Indian manufacturing industry is accelerating into the next phase of growth with the current stable government and at the same time the markets like China are entering a slow phase of growth. How do you see the role of Alfa Laval in India change with the launch of Make in India campaign and changing market dynamics?
Alfa Laval has been present in India for more than 75 years, offering our product portfolio for heat transfer, separation and fluid handling, reaching the market through 15 sales and service offices across the country.

Since many years back we have been ‘making in India’, both for the Indian market and for global supply from our 5 factories located in Pune, Satara and Sarole. We welcome initiatives which simplify business transactions within India as well as for export.

Which industry/ies in India have propelled the growth of Alfa Laval in the Indian and international markets?
We serve a wide range of the process industries with products for heating, cooling, separation and transport duties, hence single industries or markets are rarely the sole driver of growth for us. Driven by growing energy needs, stricter environmental regulations and an improving standard of living, the energy, food and environmental sectors are key for us and drives demand, both in India and globally.

What are the market challenges that you foresee in the years to come and how do you intend to address them and drive the growth of Alfa Laval India in the given circumstances?
The markets are influenced by a number of factors, both locally and globally. In Alfa Laval India we see it as our prime objective to stay agile and work closely with our customers. We have a keen focus on their needs for optimal and efficient processing within their field of business. This in line with our company mission; to continuously optimise the performance of our customers’ processes, time and time again!

How do you see the growth in each of the domains of Heat transfer, Separation and Fluid handling in the years to come? Which industries in your view would drive the growth?
All of the domains, or technologies as we call them, are integral parts of processing. We work closely with our customers in developing new solutions, optimising their processes. We find the pockets for growth within our key sectors and focus on staying close to our customers, developing our products and services to fit their need.

As the new markets open up in other regions like Africa and South East Asia what role will Alfa Laval’s India operations play in the group’s global growth strategy and global supply chains?
Today, we already take pride in ‘Making in India’. Our facilities here forms an integral part of the supply chain we have in place to serve our customers both regionally and on a global scale. As and when new markets offer opportunities having our interest, such are being explored.

Please share some of the latest technologies offered by your organisation. What are your plans for increasing the product basket?
To take the last question first; R&D delivering new and optimised products is a key area of attention for Alfa Laval, we consistently work with our product portfolio, increasing our ‘product basket’ available to our customers. In the last couple of years we have, to mention some examples, launched large-scale plate high efficient heat exchangers, new separation technology (PureDry) capturing valuable oil from waste oil and reducing waste, new and more efficient decanters for dewatering of sludge from waste water and a new high pressure anti fouling spiral heat exchanger for the refinery sector.

What are the investment plans of Alfa Laval in the Indian market? How do you plan to leverage your strengths in the years to come to be among the frontrunners in the field of chemicals processing?
We, in Alfa Laval India, are working closely with our customers and will, as we have done for the past many years, continue to build our services for the process sectors within the technologies of heat transfer, separation and fluid handling. The presence provided by our sales and service office network across India is a vital part of securing our close customer interaction.