Krishna Raman, Executive Vice President & Head - Lighting BU, Bajaj Electricals Ltd
Could you tell us about the innovations and technologies implemented by your company, especially in the LED and power solutions categories?
Bajaj Electricals Ltd., has been one of India´s oldest and most trusted brands manufacturing and marketing Lighting products for close to eight decades. Over the years, with the changes in lighting technology, we have also evolved as an organisation ushering in change at every stage. Now with the emergence of LED technology in lighting business, Bajaj Electricals has adapted itself to this exciting challenge. Seizing the opportunity to create energy efficient products, we have focused our efforts in creating value for money LED lighting solutions to meet the needs of Indian customers. Our wide range of LEDs include applications for domestic, commercial, industrial and public lighting. Today, our consumer LED lighting portfolio consists of Bulbs, Tube lights, Battens and recess mount panels as well as other LED products that meet the needs of any household or institutional user.
Are there any new products that have been or will be launched soon? Tell us about them.
The last one year has been pretty exciting for us with a significant number of new products being added in the LED category. We have recently launched our new range of lamps for the domestic consumers called ´Corona´. These lamps are available in wattages ranging 3,5,7,9,12 with a 240 degree beam angle , delivering a luminous efficacy of > 100 lm/W.
The product also comes with inbuilt 2.5 kV Voltage surge protection with an IC based circuit. We were also, the first company in the organised sector in India to offer down lights with three colour changing options in a single product. Our Battens in 18 W & 20 W are meant to replace the conventional Patti & Box type fixtures. These products also deliver close to 100 Lm/ watt. With specific reference to Industry and commercial applications, our LED High Wattage (HW) lamps in 20, 30 and 40 Watts will enable the HW CFLs or HID´s to be replaced in course of time.
Mini Flood Lights have also been launched to displace the ageing energy guzzling Halogen Fixtures.
How has this year been in terms of sales and order growth? How has the growth of the company been?
After a relatively weak FY 14-15, the consumer lighting business and the Lighting business segment have bounced back very strongly this year. We are expecting to close this financial year with a growth in excess of 20% as compared to last year. The order book also has been pretty good as well. While the conventional light sources have grown in single digits, the LED business has shown unprecedented growth this year.
The sales volume of LEDs constitute 35% to total lighting sales against less than 5% last year. Overall growth of the company is also healthy and in line with the forecasts .
Is Bajaj Electricals a part of any of the government initiatives like LED street lighting etc.? Kindly expand on your role in these.
Yes, Bajaj has been an active member in taking part in the government initiatives focusing on energy efficiency. The Consumer Lighting Business entity has bagged prestigious orders from EESL under the DELP programme (initiative of the GOI ) orders worth 90 lakh lamps in combination of 7 watts and 9 watts have been bagged with supplies made to the states of Delhi, Rajasthan, UP, Maharashtra.
Supplies are underway to Southern states of Kerala, Karnataka & Andhra Pradesh as well. Our Professional Lighting and EPC team together have combined together to supply LED street lights to EESL valued at more than 1 lakh units. In case of LED bulbs, we have been supplying LED bulbs to EESL and they take care of distribution of the same.
In the case of street lights, we are not only supplying but also doing the installation and commissioning as well. We are very happy to be part of the government´s initiative to promote energy efficiency and promote the Make In India ´campaign. All the lamps supplied are made in India.
Do you have any plans for expansion? What are your plans to take the company to the next level?
Yes, of course. With a paradigm shift happening in LED segment of the Lighting Business, Bajaj Electricals Lighting BU will invest significant time and effort in developing products and services that are oriented towards energy saving using the latest, innovative technology. The old misnomer of switching off one of two tube lights in a work place on the garb of ´saving power will give way to the state of the art ´3 stage dimming solutions which will soon emerge from the lamps to be launched from Jan 2016. This product in the lamp range will showcase the real true power of energy savings with the same lamp delivering three types of wattages using the same switch. This lamp will be affordable and available to the avid Indian customers.
The new buzz word in the Indian Industry is ´I O T´. Bajaj Lighting team is already in the process of creating products to meet this new emerging technology.
How do you assess the market scenario in India? What impact do you think the new government policies or changing market conditions will have on your organisation?
The lighting industry in India is based on 2 technologies - Conventional and Emerging. The conventional light sources would include incandescent , fluorescent , compact fluorescent and HIDs, whereas the emerging technology would dominantly be LED´s. The Indian Lighting Industry has been traditionally growing between 8 to 12% YOY. However, now with emergence of LED´s, the market is set to grow at 40% CAGR. Till 2014, the LED costs were high and prohibitive. However, in 2015, the prices of LED´s have crashed. The current government has been very proactive in launching initiatives to promote LED lighting and reduce the demand supply gap. It has helped the industry as a whole in taking the awareness of this technology to the masses. It has had a multifold impact. The kind of volumes that government is planning has encouraged domestic manufacturing of LED products thereby leading to a drastic drop in prices. A large amount of this credit for making LED lamps more affordable to the Indian public is due to the EESL, thanks to the Government´s ambitious DELP programme. The Government is aiming at procuring in excess of 70 crore units of LED bulbs by 2017 and subsidise them for the end consumers. Although it´s going to have a rub-off effect on the current distribution system it is going to eventually help the nation. As part of the´Make in India´ campaign, one can expect the government offering some subsidies for domestic manufacturing. Bright days are ahead to see India as a formidable supplier of good quality LED lighting in India. Bajaj Electricals as an organisation has always contributed to nation building for decades in different ways and means. We are as always ready and well equipped to ride on this LED wave and we strongly believe in leading the way for ´Power Saving´ as the best form of ´Nation Building.´