As per National Crime Records Bureau, around 1,40,000 people lost their lives and over 4.5 lakh suffered serious injuries in road accidents in 2014. As traffic on the roads increases further, keeping the population safe becomes an imperative. Working towards that is Steelbird Helmets’ MD Rajeev Kapur who discusses here the company’s expansion and investment planwith FE Online. To put things in perpsective, check out the overview: according to a recently published TechSci Research report, ‘India Personal Protection Equipment Market Forecast and Opportunities, 2020’, the personal protection equipment (PPE) market in India is forecast to grow at a CAGR of over 14% during 2015-20. Here are edited excerpts:
Q. How do you see the growth of safety equipment industry?
The growth of Safety Equipment will be tremendous in India in the coming years because government is also laying great emphasis on this Industry. The demand for Industrial Helmets, Coal-mine Helmets will also grow because of awareness of safety concerns. The growth towards safety shoes, welding safety equipment, dresses and safety gloves will increase incredibly because government is putting lot of efforts in making these safety equipment mandatory.
Q. In which other countries are you planning to start export of helmets?
We are the suppliers to all the OEMS to almost all the Countries of the World. As a matter of fact, we are focusing more on supplies within India rather than abroad because it is very difficult for the manufacturers to meet the growing demand of Helmets in India itself. With the growing demand of helmets all around, we have setup 3 New Plants for Helmets and we have already launched KUKKA (French Brand) of Helmet and this Brand will be exported in the year 2017 all over the World.
Q. What is your annual revenue? How much growth do you expect in coming years?
At present our Annual Revenue is around Rs 250 crore. With the latest installed capacity, machinery and new moulds and by launching new products and Brands in many segments like Steelbird Air, Ares, Ignyte-Top-end Brand and Kukka (will be exporting around the World) we are expecting that our Annual revenue will be Rs 500 crore by 2018.
Q. Are you planning to manufacture other safety equipment also?
We are already producing & supplying Helmets, Visors and Side-Boxes and a lot of engineering products to all the Helmet Manufacturers in the World. Moreover, we have set-up a plant for producing gloves, rain wear, shoe covers, riding jackets and pants under the Brand name Ignyte.
Q. What are your expansion and investment plans?
Already we are having 2 Helmet Plants in Baddi (Himachal Pradesh) and recently we have started 1 more Plant for Helmets also in Baddi. We are setting up a Plant in Rajasthan in 16 lakh square feet with 8 lakh built-up area and we are planning for investment of Rs 170 crore for this expansion project.
Q. Are you planning for IPO?
We are not planning for any IPO at present.
Q. What are your plans for ‘Make India’? Are you participating in ‘Skill India’?
We do appreciate both ‘Make In India’ and ‘Skill India’ programmes of the government. The primary goal of ‘Make in India’ is making India a global manufacturing hub which will be possible only if investments are facilitated and labour laws are liberalised so that there should be ease in doing business . Although we are not participating in ‘Skill India’ yet we fully support Government’s initiatives in this respect.