Farrokh Cooper, Chairman and Managing Director, Cooper Corporation
What according to you is driving the genset business in India? And, what is your assessment?
With the economy growing at over 7 per cent, the need for power will continue to grow. We see the genset market growing at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 6 per cent in the medium term (3v5 years). It will grow in tandem with the many developments that are taking place in rural or agricultural sector and on roads and other infrastructure projects.
The top drivers are: overall investment and growth bias in the system, efforts to solve last mile issues in carrying power to the consumers by the discoms, need for on-site power due to infrastructure works, high speed data from the much-awaited 5G mobile networks and the growth of service industries. In the overall genset market, our engine business contributes to 15 per cent of Cooper's total turnover, growing at a CAGR of over 25 per cent in the medium term.
From the business perspective, what are the challenges that confront you?
The main challenge faced by the industry is meeting the next generation emission norms expected by 2020. Our products have always been future-proof and we are confident that we will be the first to get off the block.
With the recent thrust on reducing carbon emissions, do you think the demand for diesel gensets is likely to decline? Subsequently, what are the green initiatives taken to curb emissions?
Indian diesel generator market has been witnessing tremendous growth. In today's scenario every organisation needs consistent power supply as data loss can be more expensive than the capital expenditure required for backup power equipment. Therefore, it is expected that the demand for diesel generators will grow in the coming years. Our gensets find utility and takers in homes, farmhouses, bungalows, hotels, retail outlets, IT offices, telecom towers and hospitals, among others.
What are the emerging technologies in this segment? How about gas-based DG sets?
In the genset segment, there are engine technologies like CRDI, EGR, SCR which are gaining ground to meet the emerging emission norms. In the gas genset segment, Cooper Corporation recently became the first in the industry to get approval from Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) to develop a series of gas gensets ranging from 10 KVAv25 KVA that are certified to be compliant with the new mass emission norms being administered by the Central Pollution Control Board in India. In the coming months, we will be launching ARAI-certified gas engines powering generators up to 250 KVA. These engines are specially designed for use with natural gas or LPG as against other retro fit options. Besides substantially lowering emissions, these gensets offer the benefit of bringing down operating costs and significantly reducing the sound levels. They come as a boon to power-starved consumers, especially in the DelhivNCR belt, which are reeling under severe
What technology upgrades do you see in diesel engine and fuel systems that would make their usage more viable for heavy transport, agriculture, backup power, etc.?
Since customers are often restrained by space, we have always focused on making compact gensets and continue in these efforts. We are pioneers in the common rail fuel systems, and all our diesel gensets are compliant to the latest CPCB-II emission norms. We are also bringing out a line of lightweight, compact, air-cooled diesels in the sub 20 hp range. All our engines are engineered to run on gas, a cleaner fuel. We have also commenced work on developing products to meet EPA norms to expand our overseas market footprint.
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