Rahul Jain: Innovate to venture into newer markets

Rahul Jain of Akar attended the Power Lunch at the MMS Roundtable (third edition). He belonged to the group, Bags - eco-friendly. Jain spoke to the PrintWeek India team about innovation.

07 Mar 2019 | By PrintWeek India

What should a modern press look like? In this sense, one Innovation on your shopfloor
A press should be modern and efficient with well trained skilled manpower. We have been constantly encouraging and getting our employees trained for better skill development.

Do you have to be much more innovative than your counterparts of a similar scale? How do you cope with that, constantly learning new innovations? 
That’s the only way to keep moving steadily.

What is the most innovative skillset you’ve had to develop in your team? Print or business and management? 
It has to be a combination of both. Either/or are no more options.

In terms of creating innovation, do you invest in R&D in your organisation or you follow industry trends? 
Yes, we do invest in innovations at different levels and highly encourage R&D.

What drives innovation? Is it necessity or technology? 
Necessity most of the time.

Almost all print companies have diversified into new markets or applications – what is the key to that? How are you spotting opportunities? 
Every business model has a saturation point. Beyond which everyone has to innovate to venture into newer markets and opportunities. To spot fruitful opportunities, we have to be flexible in accepting and adapting to changes in market trends in accordance with our company’s infrastructure and business.

What about automation? Is automation an area that manufacturers can help in? If yes, how? 
Automation is certainly helpful in building better efficiencies. Affordable automation that can bring in a substantial difference in efficiencies for both production and economics are the ones that manufacturers should look into.

What are the key challenges facing your vertical in the industry? 
The key challenge is the growth of interactive digital media and social platforms which are eliminating formal use of paper and pen to a great extent.

The culture of print businesses 20 years ago is very different from what it is now. How do we make print more attractive? 
That’s where an innovative approach is required to be put in.

One innovation in our industry you hope to see in 2030? 
Large format digital presses delivering quantity and quality with affordability.