Captains of component industry urge suppliers to transform in an era of disruptions

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 30 Jan 2019

The Automotive Component Manufacturers Association of India (ACMA), the apex body of the auto component industry in India, has called upon the supplier community to adapt and transform through systematic R&D, creation of new products and upgradation of skills, to stay relevant and competitive in what is an era of constant technological disruptions including newer norms on emission, safety, and consumer trends towards connectivity on the anvil.

The fourth edition of the ACMA Technology Summit, held on January 29-30, 2019 in Pune, on the overall theme of ‘Indian Auto Component Industry – Transforming to Stay Competitive’ , brought together national and international specialists in the field of Industry 4.0, Telematics, and innovative technologies that are shaping the automotive environment of tomorrow. The summit witnessed incisive sessions on Industry 4.0, electric mobility, AI, retrofitting technologies and renewable energy among others.

The summit saw the presence of Anant Geete, Union Minister for Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, government of India; Thomas Flack, president & Chief Procurement Officer, Tata Motors; Ram Venkatarmani, president, ACMA; Deepak Jain, vice-president, ACMA; F R Singhvi, chairman, ACMA Skilling & Mentoring and Vinnie Mehta, director general, ACMA.

Coinciding with the Summit, the ACMA annual Awards for 2018 were conferred, honouring excellence in the auto component industry. This year there were 224 applicants, of which 82 winners were awarded.

The ACMA awards, since their inception in 1966, are today the most covetous in the automotive sector. The awards, which began as a means to recognise and motivate excellence in manufacturing, have today 14 broad categories including excellence in Manufacturing, Exports performance, Technology, Quality & Productivity, HR, Health Safety & Environment, automation, digitisation, business growth, resource optimisation, to name a few. Several of these categories have been further curated to gives special focus to small and medium enterprises.

Speaking on the occasion, chief guest Anant Geete said, “While the government is committed to introduce e-mobility in the country, the introduction would be gradual so as not to disrupt the current industry value chain”.

Commenting on the industry transformation, guest of honour, Thomas Flack, president and Chief Procurement Officer, Tata Motors, said, “The auto component industry must embrace the digital revolution to stay competitive and relevant; the time has come for the industry to graduate to Industry 4.0 for better predictability and addressing customer requirements. To capitalise on the opportunity, companies will need to shift from their traditional ‘disconnected’ and ‘analogue’ manufacturing methods to connected and digitized ones.”

Tier 1s should mentor Tier 2s and 3s
Commenting on the readiness of the value chain, Ram Venkataramani, president, ACMA said, “While growth in the automotive industry is imminent, we, however, need to ensure that the sector, especially our Tier 2s and Tier 3s are ready to harness newer opportunities. Tier 2s and 3s pose the single biggest challenge for us today and it is critical that they be upgraded to world-class levels of performance, especially on the front of quality, processes and delivery. Tier 1s will have to play the role of mentor and guide to this segment of the industry or else the entire value chain will collapse”.

The event culminated with a panel discussion on Digitisation– Business Imperatives to drive efficiency in the supply chain.

ACMA’s membership of over 800 manufacturers contributes more than 90 percent of the auto component industry’s turnover in the organised sector. The industry clocked healthy growth of 18.3 percent posting Rs 345,635 crore (US$ 51.2 billion) turnover in the FY2017-18. While exports recorded growth of 23.9 percent scaling to Rs 90,571 crore (US$ 13.5 billion) in FY2017-18, the Aftermarket grew by 9.8 percent to Rs 61,601 crore (US$ 9.2 billion) from Rs 56,096 crore (US$ 8.4 billion) in the previous fiscal.

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