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Cutting-edge engineering tools woo India's design engineers

Posted: 28 Feb 2013     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:electronics distribution  design engineer  e-commerce 

 Shiv Bhambri, CEO, RS Components

Bhambri: In India the need for latest engineering design tools will be ever growing.

RS Components, a distributor of electronics and maintenance products, boasts of a 17 year presence in India coupled with active engagement with Indian universities. In an exclusive interview with EE Times India, Shiv Bhambri, CEO, RS Components & Controls (I) Ltd, gives us an understanding of the electronics distribution and e-commerce market in India and the company's growing portfolio of engineering tools for design engineers in India.

EE Times India: Tell us about the electronics distribution market in India. How does RS Components see this market compared with global markets?
Bhambri: The Electronics Industry reported at $1.75 trillion [Rs.95.63 lakh crore] is the largest and fastest growing manufacturing industry in the world. It is expected to reach $2.4 trillion [Rs.131.15 lakh crore] by 2020. At the current rate of growth, the domestic production can cater to a demand of $100 billion [Rs.5.46 lakh crore] in 2020 as against a demand of $400 billion [Rs.21.86 lakh crore] and the rest would have to be met by imports. This aggregates to a demand supply gap of nearly $300 billion [Rs.16.39 lakh crore] by 2020, which is a big opportunity for the distribution market.

LEDs are shown to be among your top products in India. What is the market for LEDs in India compared to worldwide?
Indian lighting market has seen buoyancy in lighting products recently. The demand for energy efficiency has brought forward an immediate need for more energy efficient products and has also pushed the market towards more efficient products such as LEDs.

What kind of opportunity do you see in India for other products like engineering design tools?
Every year almost 5 lakh engineers graduate from India. India is slowly becoming the R&D hub for all major corporates. It is increasingly becoming a destination for chip design and embedded systems. In such a scenario, the need for latest engineering design tools will be ever growing.

What are the target verticals for RS Components India? In which areas do you see growth for your company?
RS has always been a leader in Maintenance. We are trying to establish the same leadership in Electronics as well. The latest product introductions are mostly into the electronics range where we are trying to strengthen our portfolio to meet the ever growing needs of design engineers. We are getting engaged with the design engineers through our various technical marketing tools.

Can you tell us about your customers in India?
Our target customers can be classified into four groups: Electronic Design Engineers, Maintenance Engineers, Machine & Panel Builders and Buyers. We already cater to over 10,000 customers who are into diverse business—ranging from hobbyist to steel and power plants.

Do you target educational institutions? If yes, what type of partnerships do you have?
Education institutes form an important driver of our growth strategy for the next 3 years. We have run a couple of University programmes this year and seeing the success there, we are building extensive programmes to connect with the students who are the future buyers of our products.

What kind of strategy does RS Components adopt to compete with counterparts like Mouser or Element 14?
We and our competitors co-exist in the same space of distribution. What differentiates us from our competitors is our MRO offer. We have a 17 year old presence in India and operate on a multi-channel approach backed by a robust online marketing tool. We have strong local presence through our branch offices across India.

Would you like to shed some light on the e-commerce in electronics engineering in India?
The E-Commerce market in India is smaller than in other markets but it is growing the fastest. Electronics engineers are by nature web savvy and like to search and order products online. So we have a sizeable opportunity as the online population starts to spend more and buy more frequently online. Launched in 1999, the RS e-commerce portal has globally shown an amazing growth of business, with 55 per cent of the business coming online. In India, it will still take some time to catch up the accelerated growth in eCommerce growth, as people though search the products online, but still prefer to buy offline.

What are your expectations from the National Policy on Electronics? Do you see the electronics distribution market deriving benefits from these initiatives by the Government of India? If yes, what kind of opportunities do you see for RS Components?
The National Policy on Electronics has predicted a demand supply gap of $300 billion [Rs.16.39 lakh crore] by 2020, which have to be met by imports. Moreover, there is a vision to transform India into the global hub for electronics system design and Manufacturing (ESDM). At present, the electronics market is growing by over 25 per cent CAGR. So, all these collectively offer a huge opportunity for high service level distribution market in India in the times to come.

Any tie-ups or specific growth plans in 2013? What is the 5-year roadmap for RS Components India?
We are building strategic alliances locally with brands such as Tyco Electronics, Fluke, Schneider, ABB, Phoenix, Honeywell, Tektronix, and many others. We are investing in electronics product range, technical marketing tools and ecommerce to get future ready. We plan to multiply our revenue multi-fold in the next 5 years.





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