Harman, which is a fully-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co, today announced an expansion to its automotive electronics manufacturing plant at Chakan, near Pune, Maharashtra. The Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadvanis inaugurated the second phase of the plant today, marking this as the first major manufacturing investment by a top global corporation, after the 2019 general elections. Amitabh Kant, CEO of National Institute for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), was also present at the occasion.
Established in 2014, Harman’s Chakan plant, which is part of Harman’s global automotive manufacturing network spread across China, Hungary, Mexico, Brazil and Germany, manufactures highly sophisticated connected car solutions including automotive infotainment units for India’s domestic and global automotive customers. The second phase of expansion will help triple its production capacity by the year 2021. Harman plans to install four new world- class SMT production/assembly lines, scaling from existing two to six lines, to meet the growing demands for innovative connected car solutions globally.
New Rs 350 crore investment will see DCU and TCU production grow 12-fold to over 25,00,000 units per annum. Image: Amitabh Kant/Twitter
In the next three years, the production of Digital Cockpit Units (DCUs) and Telematics Control Units (TCUs) from the Chakan plant will increase from current 200,000 units to over 25,00,000 units annually – a steep 12-fold rise. Harman says it will also double its factory headcount to about 800 employees in the same time period. The total value of this investment is 350 crore (US$ 50 million).
With this expansion, Harman will be able to manufacture highly complex, customised connected car electronics solutions for its large domestic and global customers including Maruti Suzuki, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen Group, Tata Motors and Fiat Chrysler.
Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister of Maharashtra; Dinesh C Paliwal, president and CEO, Harman; and Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog, on a new of the Chakan plant.
Image: Amitabh Kant/Twitter
Speaking at the occasion, Devendra Fadvanis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra, said “We welcome Harman’s new investment to boost manufacturing in the state of Maharashtra. Over the last five years, our government has had a relentless focus towards improving the ease of doing business in our State. We are excited to see a large, global corporation like Harman taking advantage of our programs and working towards empowering skilled workforce in India. Prime Minister Narendra Modi often calls Pune the ‘Detroit of India’ as we see immense potential in the city for it to lead as the global hub of automotive manufacturing.”
Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog commented: “We believe that the future of India’s economy is dependent on the strength and nature of our large corporations, and I’m encouraged to the first major investment by Harman, coming immediately after the general elections. Under our Prime Minister’s governance, India is set on a high trajectory growth rate by undertaking a series of structural reforms across sectors, which will catalyse private sector investments and job creation. Harman’s announcement today is taking a definitive step in the right direction.”
“Harman is the leading supplier of critical electronic systems to the global connected car industry. Rapid improvement in India’s business friendly policies and ease of doing business helped us make this investment decision. This significant manufacturing expansion is largely in support of our growth plans and ‘Make in India’ vision. This is a major milestone for us and demonstrates our growing commitment to the country. We already have over 9,000 world class engineers and scientists at our R&D centres in Bangalore, Pune and Delhi who are contributing to our global growth. We are grateful for the support we have received from the state of Maharashtra,” said Dinesh C Paliwal, president and CEO, Harman.
Harman designs and engineers connected products and solutions for automakers, consumers, and enterprises worldwide, including connected car systems, audio and visual products, enterprise automation solutions; and services supporting the Internet of Things. Harman has leading audio brands including AKG, Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon, Mark Levinson and Revel.
More than 50 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with Harman audio and connected car systems. Its software services power billions of mobile devices and systems that are connected, integrated and secure across all platforms, from work and home to car and mobile.