It is preferred to manufacture precast concrete products in controlled environment under the supervision of trained and skilled workmen, which also ensures quality productivity.

What is your expectation from the upcoming edition of Excon?
A show like Excon provides us a platform to showcase new technologies and products to the industry. It also provides an opportunity to connect with existing customers, producers and competitors and exchange notes and views with them. Each show also yields new business leads and provides exposure to a significant new audience. It is important that the show attracts the best companies from all over the world as exhibitors, which, in turn, would result in good quality of visitors from the industry. The show must be well publicised through proper channels so that the target audience is reached.

What are the new products you will be exhibiting at your Excon stall?
Columbia has close to 300 plants automatic concrete block plants working in India. Most of these plants are working with semi-automatic working systems for the handling of pallets with green and cured products. Indian customers are slowly and steadily moving towards automation. We have developed automatic handling systems for our small pallet machines also. This will be available for sale to our existing customers and prospects. We are displaying automatic handling systems at our booth at Excon this year.

How is Columbia’s concrete products equipment range unique in comparison to other players of the industry?
In India, our existing concrete product machine model SPM20 provides our customers a plant with an ideal combination of a high technology machine with medium capacity and low investment in pallet and product handling. Its simplicity and ease of installation and dismantling makes it an ideal solution for project works. The Model SPM20 can be used to produce a wide range of high-quality concrete products such as hollow blocks, paver blocks, retaining wall blocks, fly ash bricks and kerbstones. All these features have provided substantial profits and quick payback on investment to over 250 users in India alone.

In your opinion what is the future of the construction equipment industry?
In India, hiring skilled and educated workers in construction and equipment industry is still a challenge. Hence producing products and getting work done at site becomes difficult. This hampers the quality and progress of the project. Hence it is preferred to manufacture precast Concrete Products in controlled environment under the supervision of trained and skilled workmen. This also ensures more productivity and consistent quality products. Our customers have realized this and are implementing the neeccessary measures at their plants. We share the success stories of one customer at one location with another customer at another location across India. This spread awareness of latest technology and trends even to remote locations in India. Trade shows like Excon also play a major role in sharing and implementing knowledge and information among our customers.

What are your plans for the coming year?
Since there is market for quality equipment manufacturers, we get customers from all over India. Shift towards automation, restriction on over utilization of natural resources, relevance of green technology for sustainable future have all led to an increased demand for our machine and technology

Apart from India what are the other markets you are looking at?
We are strong not only in India but in global markets of Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Kenya, Tanzania and other Eastern regions of Africa. We do a lot of trade shows in these markets to help develop our brand image in the minds of the people there. Slowly and steadily these markets are also developing.n

Ramesh Babbar, President & Director, Columbia Machine Engineering India Pvt Ltd

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