SPM20, moving from manual to automatic pallet handling system, introducing different types of mixers have been our priority, says Ramesh Babbar, President & Director – Columbia Machine Engg (I) Pvt Ltd.

What is your strategy to expand business for existing product range?
At Columbia Machine we are committed not only to providing you with the best concrete machines in the world, but also to continually upgrade the technology to keep your machines running for years to come. The Columbia brand is expanding more than ever before. There are 275 machines operating successfully in India alone. We have developed a market outside India as well. Potential is very strong in other Asian countries such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Cambodia and Bhutan and African countries like Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia. We also have our SPM20 machine operating in Panama and Brazil as well.

Currently we are expanding our controls so our customers will have real time access to all the information on their plant equipment. From batching and mixing systems to the concrete product machine, pallet handling system, curing system, pallet turnover, splitter and cuber. We will link the plant equipment to enable remote site access for customized real time reports and historical trending. When you are looking for a quality brand in concrete products equipment or cutting-edge technology, whether you are upgrading an existing plant or building a brand-new facility, Columbia machine has the experience, innovation and proven technology to take care of your specific needs.

What are the challenges you see are faced by the industry in dealing with upcoming demand and supply?
Due to globalization, the entire Indian market is open to all the kinds of manufacturers. Consequently, Indian market gets open to Chinese manufacturers who sell low value, low quality items in India to price conscious buyers. Most of these Chinese equipment fail to meet the customer’s expectations and produce low quality products and thus spoils the reputation of product and the producer. Even if the customer is capable of surviving this disaster, he may think twice before investing in the correct brand next time. To overcome this Indian government should consider increasing import duty for Chinese equipment in Construction sector. Even if demand is there, we are not been able to encash it successfully due to such trends.

What is your expectation from the industry bodies and policy makers to capitalise the present market?
This has been a strong decade for our industry. Consistent growth in residential and commercial construction kept many contractors and builders busy year-round. Standard concrete blocks remained a popular building product, while architecture and specialty products carved exciting new market niche. The strong growth presented some challenges for our industry but ultimately has strengthened it against competitive products.

What is your company’s outlook for 2022?
Our focus has been to ensure we are prepared with the right solutions to respond to developing market needs. Our machines are of highest quality with patented CVT vibration ensuring moulds last longer. We have introduced state of art fully automatic product handling and cubing systems. Internally we are stream lining our manufacturing process to reduce lead time for parts, moulds and equipment and finding new ways to increase our capacity and better serve our customers’ needs. In coming couple of years, we have many products lined up for launching. From introducing auto lubrication in our flagship machine SPM20, moving from manual to automatic pallet handling system, introducing different types of mixers have been our priority.

Ramesh Babbar, President & Director, Columbia Machine Engg (I) Pvt Ltd.

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