Archive for the 'Manufacturing' Category

Lenovo makes O&M B’lore global ad hub

Lenovo makes O&M B’lore global ad hub

IN A global first, PC manufacturer Lenovo is moving its entire international advertising portfolio to WPP Group agency Ogilvy & Mather’s Bangalore branch. Account planning, servicing and creative will all be now handled out of the Bangalore hub, which will work closely with other O&M branches across the world to customize advertising for different regions.

The Lenovo Hub, as it’s called, has been on a test run over the past week or so and has been fully operational since June 1. The team in the hub will work on global print, television as well as internet advertising for the Chinese PC maker, which could potentially go out to 160 countries where Lenovo has a presence.

Though China might have been the logical destination to set up a hub for Lenovo, O&M’s experience with the IBM account in India swung the deal in favour of Bangalore. In the past, according to sources, O&M has been used for some work at the Asia-Pacific level by IBM. The fact that O&M has been handling the creative business for different markets for Lenovo, the world’s third-largest PC manufacturer after Dell and HP, has also come in handy.

BoA meets today to take 40 SEZ proposals

BoA meets today to take 40 SEZ proposals

NEW DELHI: Within a week of dealing 29 SEZs, the board of approvals in the commerce ministry will meet on Tuesday to take up 40 proposals, including those of GMR Hyderabad International Airport and Wipro. Of these 40 proposals, 29 have land in possession, official sources said. While MIDC has four proposals for zones totaling over 460 hectares, GMR has proposed a 101.2 hectare airport-based multi-product SEZ in Andhra. Wipro is awaiting a nod for its 40.46 hectare IT SEZ to come up at Hyderabad.

Tatas, 27 SEZs get nod; Reliance’s still on hold

Tatas, 27 SEZs get nod; Reliance’s still on hold

THE government on Thursday deferred a decision on the RIL-promoted Navi Mumbai multi-product special economic zone (SEZ) and asked the Maharashtra government to submit a report on the objections raised by the revenue department. The revenue department had, in its report, pointed out that the proposed SEZ could create problems for the residents of the five villages that fall in the zone.

The board of approvals (BoA) on SEZs, which met on Thursday, approved 28 proposals, including the long-pending Tata’s Gopalpur SEZ in Orissa. Of the 28 proposals, formal approvals were granted to 22 projects that were in possession of land while six were given in-principle approvals. Two proposals for SEZs in Goa were deterred because of Assembly elections in the state.

Official sources told ET that the Maharashtra government representatives, who attended the BoA meeting, claimed the state had looked into all aspects of the Navi Mumbai proposal and found no discrepancies. BoA, however, insisted the state government would have to submit a report in the light of the objections raised in the Customs inspection report.

The revenue department had pointed out that if the five villages falling within the proposed site get encircled, the inhabitants may not be able to access civic amenities, mainly water bodies.
The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, too, raised objections on the ground that part of the land claimed by the developers belonged to it. “We will seek comments from the state government and promoters on the report of the revenue department,” commerce secretary and BoA chairman Gopal K Pillai said. The matter is expected to come up at the board’s next meeting on June 22.

BoA approved the Gopalpur SEZ promoted by Tatas that will come up on 1,173 hectares. The clearance was delayed earlier as BoA wanted approval from security agencies since the project is located close to a crucial defence establishment.

Sona Group co to spend Rs 100 cr to up capacity

Sona Group co to spend Rs 100 cr to up capacity

SONA Group company, Sona Okegawa Precisions Forgings, on Thursday announced its plans to invest Rs 100 crore on capacity expansion. The company is also scoutingf or acquisition over the next three years to further enhance capacity.

“In the next one year, we would take our forged gears capacity to 20 million units from the current 9 million units,” said Sona Group chairman & managing director Surinder Kapur. For this, the company is setting up a tool and die plant in Haryana with an investment of Rs 20 crore. The company has already commissioned a manufacturing plant in Pune and will invest Rs 80 crore on its construction. While the new plant at Haryana would go onstream in the next 10 months, the Pune plant would be operational by October next year, he added.

“We are looking at expanding our forgings capacity to 40 million units in the next three years. For this, we are evaluating both organic and inorganic routes of expansion,” said Dr Kapur.

The company, which has been focusing on the domestic market, is giving a boost to its global aspirations and plans to export about 6.7-7 million gears once its new fadlities start production.

Sona Group has already announced that it would invest Rs 400 crore in three years on total capacity expansion. This includes automotive systems such as steering system and propeller shafts.

Hide sign likely to belt 3 arms into single entity

Hide sign likely to belt 3 arms into single entity

LUXURY leather goods manufacturer Hide sign is likely to consolidate its three business divisions into a single private limited company in the wake of Louis Vuitton’s decision to pick up 20% stake. Hide sign is also expected to effect structural changes in its manufacturing system to bolster productivity. The Puducherry (formerly Pondicherry) based company will set up a new tannery and two new factories.

“We will be consolidating our three divisions — Akela, Hidesign and Hidesign Boutique — and make it a single private limited company. Apart from that we will be re-structuring the factory and the equipment in order to improve the quality as well as quantity of production, for which we will be bringing in the Louis Vuitton system” said Dilip Kapur, president of Hidesign.

Hidesign Boutique carried out the Indian operations, including front end retail, while Akela and Hidesign were 100% export-oriented manufacturing units.

Mr. Kapur said that a team from Louis Vuitton has completed a technical audit of Hidesign and would be aiding the company in the structural changes. “We are helping set up a factory for them in Puducherry and for us, the association with Louis Vuitton has meant shortening die learning curve. We want Hidesign to be affordable luxury, widi quality akin to that of Louis Vuitton but maintaining the current prize range,” he said. Hidesign, which currently has a tannery dose to Chennai, is now planning to set up one more at Ranipet (Tamil Nadu} with an investment of dose to Rs 20 crore. “At this facility, we will be doing only vegetable tanning. We want to experiment on Indian vegetable tanning techniques,” Mr. Kapur said.

Manufacturers betting big on slim CRT TV

Manufacturers betting big on slim CRT TV

The focus is back on the cathode ray picture tube (CRT) in the television manufacturing segment. Manufacturers are now betting big on an emerging segment known in TV circles as the “slim” CRT TV version. The CRT category is of three types: curved, flat and slim. Production had initially started off with the curved version years back. In the last eight years, the preference in the marketplace has shifted from the curved to the flat picture tubes, hi the last one year or so, technology improvements have led to the emergence of the slim category, which is now rapidly becoming the preferred choice.

Companies like LG, Samsung and Haier who have been the first to introduce the slim CRT tubes into the marketplace, are now delighted at the growth that’s been witnessed. Estimates are that the slim CRT will capture a 10% market in the next two years alone.

There were about 1 lakh units of slim CRTs sold in 2006. This year, turnover is expected to go up to 4 lakh units. Television sets which have slim CRTs installed resemble the far costlier LCD TV so much that manufacturers of slim CRT TV models are now trying to position these as aspirational items. Samsung India thinks that the slim CRT TV will be the prime growth driver in the mass market in the days to come. “The slims are more like the LCD category in look and shape. There is already a dramatic shift from conventional CRT to slim CRT. We expect 50 % market share in this segment this year,” said Samsung India deputy managing director Ravinder Zutshi. A typical 21 -inch flat is sold to consumers at Rs 9,000 while a slim is sold at Rs 12,000. Ail LCD model is priced about Rs 21,000. “The price gap between a conventional CRT and a slim will further narrow in future and this will push up sales. We will launch a new line of slims just before Diwali,” said Pranay Dhabhai, director, Haier India. “As die price gap narrows, slims may eat into the pie of flats, “said K.S. Raman, noted industry analyst.”The challenge is to grow the slim at a faster rate as the next level of up gradation between conventional CRT and LCD/ said Sandeep Tiwari, marketing head, LG Electronics India. Incidentally, the transition from curved to flats was at a much faster pace than from flats to the slims so far.

RIL Gurgaon SEZ among 26 cleared

RIL Gurgaon SEZ among 26 cleared

RELIANCE Industries (RIL) — which has been facing problems getting its SEZ in Navi Mumbai approved — got the nod for two other zones on Tuesday. While its multi-services SEZ in Gurgaon was formally approved, its proposed zone in Rewas (Maharashtra) was given in-principle approval as land is yet to be acquired there. The board of approvals (BoA) approved 26 proposals while in-principle approvals were given to nine others.

Other proposals that got formal approval include a multi-product SEZ by India bulls Industrial Infrastructure in Maharashtra, an airport-based multi-product SEZ by GMR Hyderabad International Airport in Andhra Pradesh, an IT/ITeS SEZ by Wipro in Andhra Pradesh and two IT/ITeS SEZs by Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation in Tamil Nadu.

The projects with formal approvals can now get their SEZs notified and start production after due clearances. Interestingly, RIL was planning a bigger and ambitious multiproduct SEZ in Jhajjar (near Gurgaon). However, since the company has not been able to acquire the required land and the Centre has barred states from compulsorily acquiring land for private SEZ developers, it has had to give up its grandiose plans for now and settle for the multi-services SEZ.

Projects that got in-principle approval include gems and jewellery SEZ by Gitanjali Gems in Maharashtra, leather industry SEZ by MIDC in Maharashtra, steel SEZ by Jai balaji Sponge in West Bengal, a multi-services SEZ by Gitanjali Gems in Maharashtra, a multi-product SEZ by India bulls Builders in Maharashtra and a textile SEZ by DLF in West Bengal. BoA will consider 46 proposals at its next meeting on June 22.

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