Adopt Technology Of Future For New Opportunities

By Vineet Sahni

Vineet Sahni is the CEO and Senior ED of Lumax Industries. He is a respected leader in the Indian Automotive Industry with over 32 years of experience, having demonstrated his unique leadership style. He has a rich experience of more than 20 years in the automotive lighting sector and has been instrumental in promoting self-reliance in technology for Indian engineers. He is an engineer from Delhi College of Engineering and started his career with Tata Motors. He has held various senior positions at other major players in the auto components industry.

Globally the automotive industry has been experiencing several disruptions such as digital revolution, alternate mobility, connected vehicles and autonomous vehicles. Moreover, the industry has been witnessing new methodologies in the manufacturing space. Therefore, there are challenges and opportunities for the players in the industry. First of all the technology is witnessing a strong move from mechanical to electronics.

Availability of skilled manpower in the days to come will be very crucial. The existing skill set, with the old technology, is expected to become redundant in less than a decade. The challenge for the management lies in equipping them with new skill sets required for the new technology. Strategy is required to have the right mix; upgrade the existing manpower with new skill sets and also induct new talent with new skills within the organisation. Opportunities are ample. The organisation has to change to prosper and progress, and need to adapt to the technology of future. How to ensure smooth transition will be the major challenge for the leadership as this will pave the path to success. These challenges are being witnessed for the first time in almost three decades.

Some of the evolving changes can become a threat and some can even turn to be a good opportunity for growth. Lighting will continue to be an integral part even in the BS-VI regime. However, there is a strong move towards LED, which is our strength. We see a strong shift in the technology and fortunately our partner in lighting, Stanley Electric Co, Japan, has a strong technological edge and has the technology for the future too. We have a 30-year-old strong partnership with a world leader and are poised to leverage the same as per the need. This makes us Future Ready.
At Lumax we see the opportunity to become a preferred supplier to our customers as we are already exposed to disruptive technologies. Technical expertise coupled with first mover advantage is helping us increase our revenue. The price points of new technology are way higher than the existing ones. This is a big plus.

BS-VI is a direction where all the automotive and component companies are improving their efficiencies to match the standards. We at Lumax, are sprucing up our product portfolio as per the BS-VI requirements. Healthy competition is always good for the industry and keeps us on our toes. On the flip side, the human element and the need for the machine is changing in the automotive industry. The reliance on automation, robotics, and Industry 4.0 is growing at a very fast pace. But this scenario may not generate more jobs commensurate with the increasing revenues.
Our investments are essentially aligned with the customers. Owing to the changes in Government policies and safety parameters, at Lumax, we are expanding in areas of new technologies, products and segments. We are gearing up our product portfolio as per the BS-VI requirements. Lumax has entered into joint ventures with international companies, FAE from Spain for Oxygen Sensors, Ituran from Israel for Telematics, and JOPP from Germany for Gear Shifter towers. A few other partnerships are in the pipeline.

We are cautious while making investments and mitigating the risk factors. We have staggered our investment plan to a safe level as per the existing market situation. Investments are channelled where we have confirmed orders from the customer. The risk factor has been brought down to a practical and manageable level.

The investment triggers for us are people, new order from existing customers, new partnerships, and new customers. However, the investments will be done based on the emerging demand. The initial focus will be on people. Capacity building of our human resource is of prime importance across the verticals. It is they who make advancement in all other categories possible. This will be followed by product technology and research, to primarily get us an edge over the competition. We will also be looking at automation. In terms of capacity expansion I think it is essential that we must use the existing capacity to the full by maximising productivity.

The regulations and technological disruption part of the world has witnessed it in the recent past. We in India are entering that trajectory. In these times, we plan to have the right partner by our side that has technology and skill sets to provide quick and best in class solutions to our customers in India. This will not only help us grow but also help us cater to our customers with agility and customised solutions as per their need specifications.

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