Dr Jorg Matthias Grossmann, managing director & CFO, Freudenberg Representative – India on the importance of the Indian market for the Group.
How important is the Indian market for the Freudenberg Group?
Freudenberg has been witnessing steady growth in India despite challenging conditions worldwide. We recorded a turnover of Rs 296 crore in 2006. Since then, we are growing steadily; we crossed Rs 1,000 crore in 2012, and onwards to Rs 1,553 crore in 2015.
As of December 2015, Freudenberg employed around 2,800 associates at around 50 locations in India – with four R&D centres and 14 production sites. We have invested over Rs 290 crore in India in 2015, which shows our commitment. We will expand our presence and continue to invest in India. We have high expectations and the Freudenberg Group in India expects growth in sales of between 7 and 10 percent above the previous year’s figure.
Can you detail your automotive business' operations?
Automotive is the main segment that fetches revenue for Freudenberg across the world. Globally 26 percent of our revenue comes from the auto industry. In India, 40 percent of our total revenue comes from the automobile industry. India is the sixth largest car producer with 3.1 million cars on road in 2015 with the annual production output of 23.96 million vehicles. The auto industry contributes 7.1 percent of the country’s GDP and it employs 19 million people. On the back of this, our automotive-related business will grow in the future.
What is the latest on your training centre in Tamil Nadu?
The Freudenberg Training Centre in Nagapattinam has been up and running for eight years. Thus far, 400 young people have completed a vocational training course on site. The Training Centre’s curriculum is about to be expanded to include the profession of an electrician.
The Training Centre was established as an aid project in 2008, to give young people a foundation for a better future. The region was severely affected by the tsunami in 2004. Today, it offers government-approved training in welding, fitting, machining and motor mechanics. The first electrician trade students will start training soon. There should also be an increase in the number of female students at the Training Centre.
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