Change is constant and with the change
comes a new morning, new hopes and new way of living. We are talking
about ek nayi soch, yes Su-Kam which is an excellent power solutions
provider, with the growing presence across India and over 70 countries
We are here today with the complete leader Mr
Kunwer Sachdev, Managing Director, Su-Kam.
would like to thank you for taking out your precious time to share
your journey towards success.
of all we would like to know about Su-Kam? And how this fancy name
came into being?
As everyone is
aware that Su-Kam is in inverter business but we do lot of other
businesses like solar business, battery business and inverter business.
Su-Kam was found in 1992, and initially we started with the cable
TV business and then in 1998 we moved into the inverter business,
that is power business and since then we have been continuously
growing into this power field only. So we are slowly, slowly getting
into a power solutions company rather than an inverter company or
a UPS company so we are trying to build a whole system around the
power back up solutions that is why we call ourselves as a power
solutions company and as far as fancy name is concerned, I think
I was in college then I thought of this name and it was not for
an inverter or for cable TV it was for pens that’s how name came
into the system.
You started from a garage so
please share the whole experience?
I would not call
it a garage, I got a shop and I started from there. Definitely at
one time my parents had a home where on the top of it I created
a small garage for manufacturing also. So definitely you can say
How your journey has been from
there till today?
Journey has been
very exciting and good because there was always a change happening
and we were developing products, developing markets, developing
branding and learning throughout these career and I think learning
was very high. I am very fortunate that I came to this position
and I think the kind of learnings I had in life were very exciting
What did encourage you to start
this venture of manufacturing inverters?
I do not understand
that how this happened. Actually I was already in manufacturing
business, I was manufacturing Cable TV equipments so one day I opened
my inverter at home and I realized this inverter was not a real
good product, it was troubling me at home and since I was into a
manufacturing business I thought I can make it better that’s how
I thought of manufacturing inverter but I was already a manufacturer
of electronics making cable TV products.
You are not from the technology
background and your company is running on technology…How challenging
it was for you to enter in this new world?
I think it’s
an interesting thing that I am not from the technology background
because it helps as I have no boundaries. People who learn that
one plus one is equal to two and two plus three is equal to five
they know this is the only thing they can think of and since I do
not know what is one plus one and what is two plus three so my imagination
can go to any direction so that is one thing where I think creativity
has no boundaries. When you are not technical so your creativity
can go to left right and center and sometimes it is good and sometimes
it is bad. Because sometimes when I go with some ideas to my R&D
guys they tell me sir you should learn technical things first then
I do learn but I think it helps. Secondly I think if you go to any
field whether it is politics, films or anywhere people who have
got very successful they were not from those fields so I do not
see any field where people have to, have that education to make
it successful so this it’s all passion, interest and your learning
which helps you.
We love being
there and we honor it and motivation for success is AKC, motivation
for being ethical is AKC. It’s our pride. That’s the landmark Dr
Chauhan has put for us, and at no cost during our breathing tenure
on the planet we can let the flag go down because of anything which
points a bad figure towards AKC.
With the change in time, do you
think our government is supporting aspiring entrepreneurs of our
I think the major
shift which has taken place in the last 20 years which I feel is
that earlier people used to think that the businessman is a “chor”
so any businessman having any enterprise people always used to think
that he is a “chor” or businessman is not honest, entrepreneurs
are not honest and I see in these 20 years that thing has changed.
People who are in government sector they are preparing their kids
to join the private sector rather than a government sector so I
think this is the major shift where the thought process of people
have changed and middle class or upper class people want their kids
to join the private sector. In last 5 years I have seen that lot
of people want to hear the entrepreneurs and next decade I think
belongs to entrepreneurs.
How important is it filing patents
to your company? And how many patents are in the pipeline?
When we were
doing this R&D research and we were already made lot of technologies
like Sine wave technology, big inverters, lot of charging technology
we stumbled upon and we did not know that these are the technologies
which are not made across the globe so we started exporting, we
started going out then we realized that we have really developed
certain technologies which are not developed by the other companies
and the technologies which we develop were advanced compared to
those companies which were dealing in the industry. So we started
filing for patents and we filed the first patent in 2004 which we
got that time. Our engineers did not have the time and they did
not know how to file a patent, so in 2007 we became serious and
outsourced the patent services then we realized that our company
is sitting on lot of technologies so we need to bring everything
on papers, so we started working very aggressively on this and nowadays
we are filing almost 2 technology patents in a month so we have
filed more than 60 technology patents so far and almost few patents
are in process that we are going to get. When I am talking about
60 technology patents all are published so they are final patents
that we have filed so I think the list is growing.
What are the next technologies
Su-kam is coming up with?
We are working
on lot of technologies like Solar, power, stabilization and power
monitoring so basically we want to save the power whether it is
a home, office, factory or complex we would like to save the power
whether it is the power generated by the diesel, gensets or it is
generated by any other source. So we would like to save the power
because I think in India the power wastage is very high so we are
working on those technologies and in India solar has lot of challenges
because government wants to give subsidy to the solar industry but
government faces lot of challenges in terms of technologies. So
we are working on lot of technologies where we are bringing up with
the new concept in inverters, where government can also watch what
kind of generation we are doing, one house can easily integrate
those systems at home or their offices or in the factories. Also
we are working on LED’s; improving the battery technologies because
storage is a big business worldwide storage is going to be a very
Kindly tell us about Su-Kam R&D?
That’s a very
interesting subject. We created R&D in 2001 in fact we started doing
R&D in 1990 itself but formally we got the R&D certificate from
government of India in 2001-2002. We have a very strong R&D where
we have more than 40 people working. It is one of its kinds in India
where I think we have all the equipment, testing equipments, we
have all the certifications in place and as we are working on lot
of new technologies so R&D is the backbone of the country.
How big is the R&D?
We have 10,000
square feet area, 40 people are working there and we do not have
any fixed budget for R&D, we just invest whatever is required for
How do you see demand for your
products in the coming years?
are changing from time to time so right now there is a power shortage
so we are into inverters which we are making, they are used by household
applications may be 5-7 years down the line that application is
not there because power scenario is changing in India. So we are
bringing in lot of new technology products where you can do the
storage or save the power, store the power or we can use the power
as and when required or we can get the power from the solar or wind.
So renewable we are working on, so I think in the coming times the
same technology will go ahead I don’t think so, that is why we need
lot of changes to use this technology in some other areas. Like
inverters are used in fuels, solar and various applications so we
are working in lot other applications where we can use the same
technologies with the minor changes. The same inverter technology
is used in UPS also. So this is a very interesting area where we
can explore more even when the power distribution is taking place.
We can play a major role there in the transformation, where there
are transformers they are reducing the voltage there also we can
play a major role. I think in the coming years technology needs
change which is a constant change which is happening and it’s a
need of an hour.
How did you start export and
where the industry stands today?
Actually in the
year 2004 when we sent our first consignment to Sri Lanka there
was some power problem going on and somebody called us who knew
us. We sent few inverters to Sri Lanka and the moment we started
with Sri Lanka we started exploring other countries, we made a small
team and people who never travelled abroad they were the part of
that team. I myself travelled initially then we started with Bangladesh,
Nigeria Uganda, Kenya, Middle East slowly, slowly we also learnt
that there are countries facing the similar problems so we started
exports in a very small way and today our exports are more than
100 crores. There are 70 countries we are covering and there are
more countries we need to cover. Even in the existing countries
we need to expand, there are many challenges in terms of servicing,
support structure so we are expanding. It’s a new industry we just
came as an export because what we did it was followed by others.
If you see India is the world leader in this technology, it is the
biggest exporter in this Industry.
What steps government should
take to improvise export industry?
Right now Government
has not taken it as a serious area, it does not think that this
industry can be a 5000 crore export industry and I can see it very
clearly that we can be a 5000 crore industry for exports. There
is a lot government can do, just recognizing that we are the leaders
in some areas like exports of software’s or hardware’s so if the
government can give us some more incentives that would help us.
Also other than incentives even our embassies can help us which
is right now is not there, like in other countries embassies are
very aggressive as far as helping these industries are concerned.
In India that concept is picking up but not with the speed that
we are looking at, so government can help us in many ways. Government
is definitely improving, lots of restrictions aren’t there which
were there before.
But don’t you think that the
pace is very slow since we have a huge market outside and for the
development of our country and for financial stability they should
focus more on Export Industry?
Yes you are right,
but that is not in my preview since I don’t know how government
works. It has its own speed and challenges. So what I can do is
whatever is under my preview so I cannot comment that government
Considering the changing macro-
economic environment, how do you see Su-Kam evolving and remaining
resilient during the tough times?
We have seen
the down times when the world market crashed, Indian market crashed
and I think in any company you need to evolve. You need to change
with the time so we understand that you need to evolve, products
need to evolved, Industry as a whole need to be evolved and as a
human being you need to be evolved first. So this is a very continuous
phenomenon and we are working towards it and I think when you say
resilient towards any conditions so you need to keep changing, keep
improving, keep listening, keep understanding the situation rather
than thinking that you have reached somewhere. In Su-Kam we have
a very learning culture and we want this to be maintained and we
strive for that and I hope that it will remain the same in coming
tough times too.
You have a couple of manufacturing
facilities in India and Nepal, what were the reasons behind venturing
We went to Nepal
because Nepal government had put a ban and we had almost 80% share
in Nepal so they had put a ban on import of the inverters so we
had no choice but to put up a factory in Nepal in collaboration
with one of the distributor there. As far as India is concerned
we have 6 locations where we have our factories. We went to Baddi
Himachal where government was giving us subsidies on Income Tax
and Excise so that was the reason we went to Baddi. I think if the
organization is big then having different locations is always good
because there could be some problems which could arise like strikes,
workers strikes, transport strikes so definitely different facilities
are always good in such situations.
Can you please throw some light
on your expansion plans?
We are expanding
in storage business like batteries so we are trying to bring automobile
batteries we are always working hard and Mr. Ganguly who was the
chairman of the site he joined our board. Also we are working on
lot of new technologies inverter, UPS and automobile because in
the automobile front there are only 2 companies in India right now.
There is lot need to be done in that area. So battery area is improving
like anything then solar is a big challenge. We are working on the
solar and we are going to expand in a solar business where we will
be putting off grid and on grid systems. So expansion plans are
Su-Kam is a big name now so how
differently you position yourself from your closest competitors?
As you said it’s
a big so I don’t have to talk about competition, actually I don’t
look at the competitors since in our industry we are the ones who
always bringing in the technologies so in fact whenever I opened
any product 1 - 2 years back I did not find anything worthwhile.
So I don’t waste time what competitors are doing and my focus is
always on what we need to do, how we are doing it and how can we
With the budget just round the
corner from your industry point of view, what favorable changes
are you expecting that will impact the industry?
I think the whole
industry will be impacted if government would increase the limit
for Income Tax if that is uplifted say 3-3.5 lakhs lot of salaried
people will get lot of money in their hands to spend. So whatever
money that we definitely come into the system rather than going
to government that’s a big chunk. Lot of people will into get, who
are not paying tax they will also start paying tax to the government
so it’s a very good move if government is going to upgrade the list.
As far as other things are concerned I think government is reducing
the CRR ratio which they have already done, 5 days back they reduced
the CRR, lot of lucrative banks are also coming. So I think government
need to further reduce the CRR ratio, so the money should come into
the system. Government is trying to spend money from their home
companies, public sector companies and rest government has hardly
What are your views about UPS
I would like
to mention that UPS industry is controlled by Chinese manufacturers
or other foreign multinationals, it is because there is no duty
on the UPS so I would request to the government to relook at the
picture. UPS industry should have some sort of restrictions because
UPS as a whole with the batteries is coming without any taxation
in India and when we are manufacturing we have to give some duties
and when you have a finished product there is no duty. This has
hit Indian market in a big way so I think government need to relook
at the situation so that Indian companies can come at the competitive
Being a self made successful
entrepreneur, do you have any message for aspiring entrepreneurs?
I think nowadays
everybody wants to become rich even in our times we wanted to become
rich and famous. This is the general tendency among everyone. But
I feel you should have the focus, nobody knows what he or she can
do, even I did not know that I would come to this stage. So you
have to find out that what is the area which interests you and that
is only possible when you start working rather than talking or sitting
or thinking one should start working and then you do the best in
that job because you never know when somebody will come and see
you working there and he will pick you from there so you have to
perform the best whatever you are doing not thinking that no I am
not made for this or I am not cut for this whatever chance you get
to perform you should perform the best because you never know that
would lead you to somewhere else. I will give you an example, somebody
is coming to my home and washing my car and I see him performing
his duty very well and I know he is a great guy, he washes my car
properly and he is a hardworking guy, may be tomorrow I will take
that guy and put him somewhere else which I have done in the past.
So nobody knows who will end up where, so first thing is to start
working whatever comes to their hand so slowly, slowly opportunities
would start opening up. It’s not that god is going to come to your
place and would knock and say that we have an opportunity for you.
So opportunities are lying everywhere so you start doing something
whether you are paid less or more you should start working and then
you start getting your directions rather than waiting what is my
interest area. Some people I meet, they say that we are still looking
what interest us the most then I ask them that are you doing something?
They say No, then I say how will you come to know that what interests
you unless you start working. So I think the only message I will
give you is that no work is small or big, there is no industry which
is small or big, there is no industry where you can say you can’t
make money or you can make money. So you start working and that
will lead you to your interest area and try to do the best what
you are doing, what you are giving to your work. So you should try
your best, that’s all I want to say.
Thankyou so much from CAclubindia
for your inspiring words!
Comments on this Interview
Member (Account Deleted)
[Scorecard : 20
04 March 2013
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Member (Account Deleted)
[Scorecard : 22
22 March 2012
" Change is constant and with the change comes a new morning, new hopes and new way of living. We are talking about ek nayi soch, yes Su-Kam which is an excellent power solutions provider, with the growing presence across India and over 70 countries worldwide.
We are here today with the complete leader Mr Kunwer Sachdev, Managing Director, Su-Kam.
Sir, CAclubindia would like to thank you for taking out your precious time to share your journey towards success. "