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Investing to build pan-india operations in next three years

19 May 2017

Macromedia’s Ramakrishna Musunuri and Naresh Kumar Dassari tells Priya Raju the firms strategy to open manufacturing facilities across India, and how they intend to be a market leader in the high-end OOH and signage solution segment.

untitled-3 Ramakrishna Musunuri (l) and Naresh Kumar Dasari (r) of Macromedia Digital Imaging

Q: Last year you invested in EFI Vutek GS3250 LX Pro and Vutek GS3360?
We were really fascinated with the quality and productivity of the Vutek machines. The 10-colour hybrid printer has an LED feature that enables us to print on a broad range of substrates. With the addition of the new EFI Vutek GS3250 LX to our portfolio, we feel assured of meeting the customer deadlines with the latest green technology and with no compromise on quality. Also, the GS3360 from Vutek was installed at our Hyderabad facility a few months ago.

Q: What features did you particularly like? How has the performance been?
The performance of the Vutek machines has according to our expectations. We took rigorous trials and evaluated many platforms and were absolutely convinced with the vibrancy of the machine. The white ink opacity and three layer back-lit applications were among the features which convinced us to finalise the equipment.

Q: Do you intend to invest or expand in the near future?
Investment has been the key to Macromedia’s success since its inception. We have always been investing in new print technology and infrastructure from time to time. We are installing one more Vutek GS3360 at our unit in Chennai. This is apart from the one that we already have at our Hyderabad unit.

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Q: What is Macromedia’s plan for next few years?
We are investing huge in owning land parcels to build our own manufacturing units. We are ready to move into our own property at Cochin which has a built-up area of 15,000sq/ft. With this unit at Cochin all our plants in South India, except the one at Bengaluru, will be our own premises. We are in process to finalise a land deal in Bengaluru for our own unit and after we close the deal the unit should be up and running within a period of six months.

Q: Can you tell us more about Macromedia’s green initiative?
In addition to adopting green printing technologies we have recently installed a 120KVA capacity solar energy plant on a pilot basis at our Hyderabad unit. We intend to install a similar solar energy plant at our Cochin unit as well.

Q: What is your view on demonetisation and how has it impacted your business?
Demonetisation was a very positive step from the government for the growth of our country. It did impact our business temporarily, but I think it will be beneficial for us in the longer term.

Q: Your views on the GST rollout?
Presently, the tax rate varies from state to state on the products that we supply due to an improper classification of our product. After the implementation of GST uniformity in tax structure will be a big advantage for our business.

Q: When do you expect an overall revival of the economy and what would drive growth?
After the demonetisation move and subsequent cash crunch, the economists predicted a sharp fall in India’s GDP growth rate. But GDP data for the December 2016 came in at 7% which was a surprise for many and it had shown a limited impact of demonetisation. I feel the government’s thrust to push its schemes in real estate, manufacturing and on small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) is what is going to drive the economy in the coming years. The corporate earnings for the financial year 2017-18 post the GST implementation will give us the real picture.

Q: What is keeping you busy at Macromedia currently?
Presently we are busy getting ready for the GST roll out. We are updating our ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software for the same.

Q: What trends do you observe in wide-format and out-of-home (OOH) sector?
Currently, the billboard printing segment has not seen any new innovations and as such we don’t see much happening on that front. Whereas in-shop and on-shop branding has seen a lot of new innovations and transitions from time to time. Clients are opting for textile printing for their in-shop requirements and LED signage, ACP (aluminium composite panels) and channel letter boards for their on-shop requirements.

Q: Finally, what is your vision for Macromedia…
We aim to be a full-fledged end-to-end signage manufacturer, with pan-India operations and manufacturing facilities. Over the next three years we will invest six to eight crore rupees to achieve this. Our strategy is to retain our leadership and continue to be the one point contact for high-end OOH and signage solution provider across the country.

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