Panellists Say Coming Year Will Be Big For The Industry, Project Tremendous Growth Of Glass Sector
Glass Bulletin (GB) and Messe Düsseldorf India (MDI) together organized a webinar on trends of industry growth for flat glass on September 15. The session featured eminent speakers from the industry who deliberated and shared their perspectives on the future of the Indian glass industry.
The panellists were Mr Divyendu Pundhir, Vice President and CEO of Gujarat Guardian Limited, Mr Chaitanya Madan of Manchu Toughened Glass, Mr Ali Kamil, Director of Kaenat Glass, Mr J D Pawar, glass industry consultant, Mr Shetha Bhavesh, Director of Naitri Enterprise, and Mr Prashant Bagkar, Business Head at Pulsar Technologies.
The session was moderated by Mr Anand Nair, Director of Projects at MDI, and Mr Lakhan Singh, Editor and Publisher of Glass Bulletin. The webinar began with a welcome note by MDI Managing Director Mr Thomas Schlitt.
Mr Schlitt announced the new dates of glasspro INDIA 2021. The fourth glasspro INDIA, which was put off due to the outbreak of COVID-19, will now be held on September 23-25, 2021 in Mumbai. He also introduced a new segment that will be part of the exhibition – fenestrationpro INDIA.
The moderators expressed hopes that although the country and the industry were going through a difficult time because of the pandemic, the worst was over. The glass industry will bounce back in no time aided by collective efforts of all those associated with it and supported by the government’s initiatives and policies, Mr Nair said.
“Speaking on profit margins, Mr Pundhir said per capita consumption of glass in India has to be increased and value addition of glass enhanced. Also, opportunities should be explored to export glass”
The discussion began with the panellists presenting their opening remarks. They opined that the coming year would be big for the industry and projected tremendous growth of the glass sector.
Mr Pundhir spoke about customers’ requirements in the present day. He said aesthetics and performance of glass are the two aspects customers were looking for Energy efficiency is talked about a lot. Mr Pundhir added that the customer was aware about sustainability and green buildings because there is so much information available to them. He said that the Union government has regulations for high performance glass at par with developed countries.
The industry can greatly benefit by adopting these provisions and educating itself, Mr Pundhir added. Speaking on profit margins, Mr Pundhir said per capita consumption of glass in India has to be increased and value addition of glass enhanced. Also, opportunities should be explored to export glass to Western countries and not just to those in the neighbourhood, he said.
Talking about the designer glass industry, Mr Kamil said it is growing and has a wide product range. As long as creativity in this sector is growing, we can learn new things, he said, adding there is a lot of innovation in this field and it has a great future ahead.
Adding to this, Mr Madan said there is a huge market for export of designer glass products made in India. Awareness should be created about this segment in the market, he added.
Mr Bagkar focussed on quality as one of the most important aspects to be considered. Processors should be quality-conscious besides being price-conscious, he said. All processors should set up a laboratory, Mr Bagkar added. Speaking on how the government’s ‘Make in India’ was gaining traction in the industry, Mr Bhavesh said small equipment for glass is being manufactured in the country now unlike in the past when everything had to be imported. He said this trend will slowly grow, and with focus on quality and also availability, the glass industry in the country can become independent.
Mr Pawar said this is undoubtedly the right time to invest in the glass industry in India. He said that 60-70 per cent glass for the home appliance sector is imported. With emphasis on value addition in glass in this sector, the domestic market can be easily captured, Mr Pawar added.
He said the demand for domestic producers will double itself in the next two years if investments are made and expansion plans undertaken now. Mr Pawar stressed on the need to think about cutting operational costs which will definitely lead to increase in profit margins. The webinar also conducted an opinion poll, in which all panellists and participants voted on three questions on the glass industry in India.
Do you think 2021 will be huge for the glass industry?
Do you think this is the right time to invest or expand?
Are you following the minimum credit policy?
An Opinion Poll Asked if they thought that 2021 would be huge for the glass industry, 63 per cent said yes, eight per cent voted no and the rest said maybe. On if they thought this is the right time to invest or expand, 62 per cent said yes, 21 per cent said no and 17 per cent voted maybe. Asked if they are following the minimum credit policy, 82 per cent of participants voted yes, while the rest said no. The session was wrapped up with a vote of thanks from Mr Lakhan Singh.