Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Interaction - Jalaj Gupta, Business Head, Commercial Vehicles, Mahindra & Mahindra

 

       

 

At Mahindra we are proud to integrate and create iMAXX, the next generation telematics technology

 

Innovation is order of the day and MAHINDRA CE has been at the forefront by imbibing cutting edge and advanced technologies in its machines to make them smarter and more efficient. In an exclusive interview to CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES, JALAJ GUPTA, BUSINESS HEAD, COMMERCIAL VEHICLES, MAHINDRA & MAHINDRA LTD, gives an overview on the CE industry, his company’s innovative machines, cutting edge technologies and a lot more.

 

 

 

 

Give us an overview on the CE industry, latest technology trends and market dynamics. What are the types of construction equipment currently in demand?

Experts suggest that the construction equipment industry is deemed to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% in the next 5 years alone. When we talk about the current Indian climate in terms of construction and market dynamics, massive projects such as extensions of national highway structures, the National Infrastructure Pipeline and development of SMART cities tells a tale of high demand and high supply of construction equipment. The pandemic also brought about certain drastic changes in the industry. The latest trends in construction equipment take their root in all our post-pandemic needs. Namely:

  • Automation of processes in manufacturing as well as smarter systems built into our equipment
  • Technological revolution through the use of AI systems in construction equipment
  • A larger and more pressing emphasis on safety protocols
  • Having Compression Ignition Direct Injection (CIDI) engine technology

At Mahindra we are proud to integrate all of these needs and create iMAXX, the next generation telematics technology. iMAXX is an intelligent fleet telematics solution that can maximize returns for every transporter. It deploys cutting-edge telemetry technology like Dual CAN (Controller Area Network), 4G and other leading digital technologies like machine learning and Artificial intelligence to provide powerful insights on vehicle health and performance. Customers now want to be aware of just how much productivity they can get from one machine and we at Mahindra recognise this need and strive to cater to it. This is why our range of EarthMaster and RoadMaster Backhoe Loaders come with the latest Mahindra iMAXX technology. The backhoe loader is one such piece of construction equipment that is high in demand.

 

What are the types of equipment offered by your firm? Cutting edge technology featured in your products. What distinguishes your products from competitors.

We are proud of our EarthMaster and RoadMaster range of construction equipment. Motor graders, backhoe loaders and earth moving machinery are the pieces of construction equipment that are highest in demand in India. With our current scenario of road development in India, Mahindra realises that almost 90% of our roads are not national highways. Keeping this in mind, we have engineered machines that are compatible with the Indian roads.

Our graders, loaders and earth moving machines are also equipped with an innovative and revolutionary telematics solutions technology known as iMAXX. This technology will constantly update you with crucial information about your vehicle, its usage, and your business. With features like vehicle diagnostic reports, fuel level analysis, service reminders, live location tracking services, engine temperature monitoring and much, much more. We at Mahindra always strive to deliver the best in class efficiency, low maintenance costs with top notch technology that not only saves fuel theft but also helps you understand your machine better.

 

 

Please provide details on your emphasis on technology, research, design and innovation? What is your focus on technological upgradation in respect of your products? What are the advancements you have introduced or plan to introduce?

The future of construction equipment IS system automation, artificial intelligence, using virtual and augmented reality embedded into machinery to make them smarter and more efficient. This has been our research focus for our new range of products. With iMAXX, we have been able to advance in the market as this telematics solution is one of the firsts in the Indian market.

 

Briefly give us an understanding about your manufacturing units – location, size, production capacity, technologies used etc?

The Mahindra Construction Equipment are being manufactured at Mahindra’s state-of-the-art facility at Chakan, Pune. Mahindra’s Product Development team has utilized extensive consumer insight and feedback to develop its products which are built to withstand India’s rough terrain and heavy usage. In addition, these products offer all the relevant features using the latest vehicle systems and technologies at competitive prices. Our grader range totally aligns with the theme “building India for a new world”.

 

Your strategy in this price sensitive market. To what extent is consumer behavior influenced by cost?

In terms of backhoe loaders and other equipment like road graders and movers, the cost plays a major role in the purchasing decisions of customers and clients. People want low operational costs, high productivity per litre and high hourly earnings. And this is precisely what the Mahindra guarantee is. Through the embedded iMAXX services, the overall cost of running your equipment or machine can be checked as well.

 

Give us an understanding of the post-sale services offered by your company?

  • Call centers are available 24 hours to solve issues. We have around 50+ dealers stationed across 80+ cities.
  • We retain skilled, educated and dedicated service engineers that are aware of the troubleshooting points of all our machinery and can resolve it immediately.
  • Preventive maintenance checks with the help of iMAXX. iMAXX telematics solutions work as a personal assistant for your equipment, giving you updates about how the machine is running, and preemptively lets you know when it will need servicing.

 

Your outlook for the rentals market?

For developing countries to grow faster, machine rental is the most effective model in the construction space. Our mission is to cater to the needs of every customer, be it small, big, urban or rural. With this mission in place we are happy to offer rentals for our construction equipment. At this stage of rapid development in terms of infrastructural projects in India, it is a perfectly viable option to rent. That’s where Hello Machine comes in.

The advantage of equipment rentals is that you can adopt an Asset Light Model for your business. Blocking capital to purchase construction machines would not be needed, and this helps significantly minimizing cost. You also enjoy a lower maintenance cost, and you help improve uptime. You can focus solely on core construction activities and on completing the project sooner, and not on shelling out huge sums of money.

 

What are the organizational surprises we can expect from you in EXCON? Are you launching any new innovative products or new breakthrough technologies at EXCON? Are you also looking for new collaborations and tie - ups?

An exciting event that will happen is the unveiling of our new graders in the niche segment that are BSIV compliant. These graders are embedded with revolutionary iMAXX telematics solutions that provide clients with the ability to track and analyse data in real time. These are the G75 graders in the RoadMaster range.

At Mahindra we are constantly on the lookout for good collaborations and tie-ups that are mutually beneficial. Should such an opportunity arise, we are eager to work for it.

 

What is your outlook for the construction equipment industry and your company going forward?

With a compound annual growth rate of 10% by the year 2027, the construction industry is one of the most competitive sectors in India. The halt of the pandemic has eased and subsequently brought with it the realisation that infrastructure and development are the needs of the hour. We are glad that the government of India also recognises these needs and are pushing major projects like the National Infrastructure Pipeline, The Gati Shakti Plan and initiative for building of SMART cities.

We believe that if these initiatives are executed with the same gusto with which they are being planned, it will completely alter the scene of infrastructural development in India. And we at Mahindra are all primed and are ready to serve our best in class products to help realise these goals.