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Home Articles ACMA Automechanika 2013 The buzz is back

ACMA Automechanika 2013 The buzz is back

Despite a slowdown, India’s maiden trade show for the auto components and aftermarket industry lived up to its billing and the positive mood reflected in the business visitors, says Bhargav TS

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That there is a drop in the sale of passenger and commercial vehicles is evident from various data available. But what is significant is for the first time, both vehicle sales and the aftermarket business have shown negative growth, a situation that does not augur well for component manufacturers. Some companies have started looking at the export market to beat the heat as well as to maintain market share.

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Against this background, the Pragati Maidan in New Delhi played host to ACMA Automechanika New Delhi, the country’s first focussed exhibition for the auto components and aftermarket sectors, from 7 February 2013. Being the inaugural edition, the event was organised by Messe Frankfurt in partnership with the Auto Components Manufacturers Association (ACMA) of India evoked a huge response from the auto industry by 261 exhibiting companies (149 domestic, 112 international) and attracted 8,157 business visitors, which also offered ample networking opportunities with key regional and international players. Automechanika events globally are renowned as the meeting place for the automotive sector and for third-country business, present the entire process chain in the automotive aftermarket, from point-of-sale, via services, to recycling and waste disposal. It was only logical that ACMA Automechanika New Delhi duly focussed on the India’s automotive aftermarket covering six product groups – Parts & Systems, Accessories & Tuning, Tyres & Batteries, Repair & Maintenance, IT & Management, and Service Station & Car Wash.

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Speaking after inaugurating the four-day event, Praful Patel, Union Minister of Heavy Industries said, “Event of this kind is a platform to show India’s prowess in the auto component field. Currently the automotive industry is facing a slowdown and it is important to revive the sector, which contributes around 22 percent of the country’s manufacturing GDP. I would also facilitate talks with the Indian automotive industry’s parent ministry, the Ministry of Heavy Industries, to hold discussions with the Finance Ministry to offer support to the auto industry.”

Commenting on ACMA Automechanika 2013, the president of ACMA, Surinder Kanwar said, “The Indian aftermarket is significantly growing by 10 to 15 per cent and we hope that ACMA Automechanika India will further boost this market development. ACMA will also mobilise participation and business delegations to Automechanika’s 12 other worldwide fairs held in Asia, Europe, North America, South America and Africa.”

Bang on target

ACMA Automechanika 2013 saw more than 250 exhibitors put up stalls spread over 9,500 square metres. A prominent theme at the show was ‘Asli-Naqli’, which focussed on counterfeiting and the efforts taken by industry to eliminate the same. The theme included provision of global assistance in ensuring intellectual property of exhibitors and spread awareness about the benefits of using genuine components.

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The event was marked by the presence of a large number of SMEs – many of them participating for the first time in an Automechanika event. The mood among companies – many of which hailing from Haryana, Faridabad, Punjab and Gujarat – was of upbeat optimism. As for overseas exhibitors, there was an overbearing presence from China, which was represented by nearly 50 companies. The products displayed in Chinese pavilion including vehicle diagnostics, halogen lamps, rear parking sensors, piston rods, suspension parts for trailers, wheel rims, slide bearings and shock absorbers. While talking to Automotive Products Finder about their participation, most of the companies said they had come to India looking to hire distributors for their products. There were also other country pavilions from Germany, Italy, and the UK.

Banking on aftermarket business

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Transmission major, ZF showcased its expertise and products for the Indian market. The company had displayed Ecolife transmission, which can be retrofitted to vehicles having 300 to 340 HP engines and having input torque of 1100 to 2400 Nm. Currently, Ecolife transmission is used in Volvo buses both in CNG as well as diesel variants. For the passenger car segment, ZF displayed a car chassis that employed its range of products including clutches, shock absorbers, steering gears, and suspension components. Company officials said the main intention of their participation was to showcase their capabilities in retrofitting products for both commercial vehicles and passenger cars.

Emission control and ride control products manufacturer, Tenneco Automotive India, focused on its Monroe-brand of shock absorbers and struts for vehicles across all segments and had displayed its front shock absorbers for luxury cars. Monroe products are available for more than 80 per cent of the cars on Indian roads. This coverage is set to increase as the company continues to add new domestic and international vehicle references, leveraging both its domestic production capacity and that of Tenneco facilities in other parts of the world.

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The company’s Deputy Managing Director, Pankaj Kapoor said, “Monroe offers the widest shock and strut product range on the Indian market with applications for all types of vehicles – from passenger cars, SUVs, three-wheelers, off-road, light commercial vehicles and medium- and heavy-duty trucks. We would like to concentrate more on these products and will continue to expand our aftermarket product with high quality and technology.”

Sharing his views, Pawan Sharma, Vice President, Elofic Industries Ltd, said a show like Automechanika in India would benefit participants in terms of huge promotion to their business and brand. Such an event would offer a great opportunity to know about the latest technological developments in the industry. The filter manufacturer had displayed its wide range of filters and lubricants for all vehicle segments ranging from two-wheelers to off-highway equipment.

Eye on exports

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In addition to expansion at home, component manufacturers view exports as major growth engines. This is where an event like Automechanika plays an important role in exposing them to potential customers. From the customers’ point of view, they get to compare the engineering and manufacturing strengths of India and China under one roof. It is increasingly becoming apparent that India’s advantage in providing value engineering is beginning to make a mark.

Most of the companies that APF spoke to believed that global business was important to increasing their market share, especially in the aftermarket business. Director of New Delhi-based radiator manufacturer, Nissim India, Gurdip S Chandha, said, “Currently we have equal share in OEMs, aftermarket and exports. But due to slowdown in the domestic market, we would like to increase exports to 50 per cent. This would certainly help in gaining more market share.” The company is continuously investing towards new technology to meet the global standards.

Future Trends

A two-day seminar held during the event helped better understand the current aftermarket trends and offered a holistic insight on the challenges and opportunities in this sector. The seminar focused on areas like auto components distribution systems, developments in the auto servicing and retail segments and manpower skill challenges in the aftermarket. The seminar also concentrated on educating leading influencers and decision makers of the industry, on the ramifications of counterfeiting.

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Speaking at the seminar, ACMA president Surinder Kanwar said, “The Indian auto component industry is one of the few sectors of the economy that has a distinct global competitive advantage. Though the sector is currently experiencing some turmoil, these have however failed to dent the confidence and spirit of the industry. There is no doubt that the long-term growth prospects of India and the India Auto Component Industry are bright. The aftermarket in the country is growing at a pace higher than the overall component industry. ACMA is engaged with the Government and relevant agencies to ensure that this segment of the industry evolves in a responsible manner.”

Soumitra Bhattacharya, Chairman, Consumer Affairs and Anti Counterfeiting Committee, ACMA, and Joint MD, Bosch Ltd, said, “The Indian auto component industry by virtue of supplying to Japanese, Korean, American and the European OEMs in India is well versed with the quality expectations of customers in these markets. The after markets, especially in the US and Europe, are as significant in size as the OEM markets. The time is now ripe for Indian component manufacturers to spread their wings and harness aftermarket opportunities in these markets as well.”

Managing Director of Hella India Lighting Ltd, Ramashankar Pandey, highlighted the huge financial losses to the industry and country due to the menace of spurious auto components, which are the cause of a large number of on-road deaths. To summarise, ACMA Automechanika New Delhi signalled that the buzz is back in the auto industry with a good showing by international and Indian exhibitors. Going by the reactions of both participants and visitors, there are indications that the outlook is good for the future. In all, the event ended on a very optimistic note for the automotive industry, and as a harbinger of the good times to come.

Launch pad

Glysantin from BASF

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German chemicals major, BASF launched the Glysantin brand of engine coolants for the Indian aftermarket at ACMA Automechanika. The Glysantin range of engine coolants is a premium coolant for passenger cars and commercial vehicles. It protects the long-term functional reliability of cooling systems from corrosion, overheating and frost. Glysantin comes in three variants – G30, G40 and G48. G30 is a premium-grade coolant that is free of silicates. This product employs organic acid technology (OAT) and contains organic corrosion inhibitors to protect the cooling system. The G40 is high-performance protection for the cooling system, which is a new-generation premium engine coolant with silicon additive package. The G48 is a premium-grade coolant that employs hybrid technology. It contains a mixture of inorganic and organic corrosion inhibitors to protect the cooling system.

Disc brake pad from Benara Udyog

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Agra-based Benara Udyog launched its new disc brake pads for the passenger car segment. The new disc brake pads will require less braking effort compared to drum brake-fitted cars. Commenting on the new product, the company’s CEO, KR Kumar said, “The new disc brake pad is engineered and designed in South Korea with advanced formulation. It is equipped with a brake pad wear indic tor, which is not present in drum brakes. It is also safer than drum brakes in hard braking conditions, which normally tends to lock up the rear wheel and leads to skidding.” He said the company plans to sell this product to both OEMs and after market.

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