Despite the severe global economic crisis, the Indian economy has shown surprising growth, only partially impacted, in a negative way, in export-dependent sectors and segments, which represent less than a quarter of the country’s economy.
Stimulated by a package of around eighty thousand million dollars in development incentives, the Indian economy grew by approximately 7.9% in the third quarter of 2009, with a boom in domestic consumption and accentuated creation of jobs, which is expected to increase still further in 2010.
Efacec has been consolidating its position in this market of vast opportunities, particularly since India became the seventh most important market for Efacec's international growth in 2008. Efacec had eighty-two employees in this market at the end of 2009, compared with forty-eight at the close of 2008.
New developments have been increasingly apparent in this region, particularly in the Logistics activity, with the acquisition of a majority stake in Godrej by GEARL, with Efacec now holding 51% of the joint venture (JV).
Efacec, which has been present in India since 1998, formed its first partnership in the country, a JV with Godrej, known as GEARL (Godrej Efacec Automation and Robotics, Ltd.). This JV, in which Efacec is now a majority shareholder, is located in Bombay and had forty employees at the end of 2009.
In terms of airport logistics, Efacec partially outsourced the mechanical engineering and manufacturing of baggage handling systems for GEARL.
GEARL received two important orders from Indian Railways.
At the same time, the largest and fastest automated warehouse ever executed by GEARL, with a height of 28 meters and a speed of 2.4 m/s and belonging to Intas Pharmaceuticals, entered the commissioning phase.
The company also developed the first cooperation agreements in the area of reconditioning information and communication technologies, thus creating education and training opportunities in the area of automation.
Regarding MV activities, the kick-off of the operations took off in April 2009, after the official inauguration, and different products such as the Normacel L600 25kA, the Fluofix GC excluding the ISFG switch, the Fluofix GC EDF, based on the order specifications, the Qbn7 structure and the Normacel L-600 earthing switch are already in production as part of two joint ventures formed with C&S Electric in 2008. Products like the L850 chassis and the 40 kA structures are already validated as well.
At the beginning of 2008, Efacec had established two JV’s with C&S, one of the four largest Indian groups in the low voltage branch.
These two JV's form part of reasoning to optimise costs on a worldwide scale, including the installation of industrial centres employing Efacec capital in well-defined geographic segments. The aim is to make a product cost-effective. This product has to feature greater flexibility to satisfy the specific demands of local customers (product customization) and overcome initial hurdles such as approval, certification, access to customer, taxes and cultural aspects.
Alongside this, over 300 projects are in progress for the production of components, which corresponds to approximately 3000 different parts.
Another highlight in 2009 was the success achieved by the Automation Business Unit in prequalification as a SCADA Implementation Agency (SIA) of the ambitious Electricity Distribution Network Accelerated Restructuring Reform Programme, an initiative of the Indian government aimed at introducing the SCADA/DMS systems in eighty Indian cities. The field of opportunities in this area enables the Automation Unit to be identified as one of those that presents strong possibilities for implementation in the short term, in the Indian market.
Besides the Automation activity, the Transformer, Renewables and Engineering activities were also identified as those with the best opportunities of being replicated in the Indian market in the near future.