Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd (DCBL) pioneered the super-specialty cements in India and with its R&D lab focusing on exploring innovative means to exceed customer expectations through research, the company has established a strong presence in Southern market.The Dalmia Group has a heritage of serving the nation for last seventy seven years since its inception in 1935. Whereas, Dalmia Cement (DCBL) has always been amongst the leading cement manufacturers in India. Having double digit market share and pioneering in the super-specialty cements, Dalmia Cement during these years have earned the company reputation and trust of the customers. Established in 1939, Dalmia Cement has grown experiencing ups and downs in the economy of the country. Dalmia Cement initially started up with four cement plants, out of which two were affected during Independence struggle and partition thereafter. The remaining two plants kept operating as Dalmia Cement. The company has also made strategic investment in Orissa Cements (OCL) which is being operated in eastern part of the country and has also stake in Calcom Cement. DCBL was one of the first cement companies in India to be awarded the ISO 9000 certification.The beginningWhile starting the operations in 1939 DCBL had installed 250 tonnes per day kiln to manufacture cement by semi-dry process. Later the company installed 500 tonnes per day wet process kiln supplied by FLSmidth, Denmark. During 1959, the company expanded with the installation of another 500 tonnes per day wet process kiln. In 1976, DCBL developed specialty cement for railway sleepers and entered the speciality cement market. DCBL was the first in 1981 to install raw mill vertical roller mill, which is now commonly used for grinding raw meal, cement, slag and coal in cement, power and steel plant. Later in 1984, the company developed specialty cement for oil wells. In 86’ DCBL introduce poly bags for the packaging of cement. 2005 witnessed huge expansion for DCBL, extending the cement capacity from 1.5MT to 3.5MT.Strong presence in SouthDalmia Cement has cement plants in southern states of Tamil Nadu (Dalmiapuram & Ariyalur) and Andhra Pradesh (Kadapa), with a capacity of 9 million tonnes per annum. DCBL is a multi-spectrum cement player pioneering the super-speciality cements used for oil wells, railway sleepers and air strips. The company holds a stake of 45.4 per cent in OCL India, a major cement player in the Eastern region, and now control a cement capacity of 14.3 million tonnes. They have a strong presence in Southern and Eastern regions of the country.DCBL has constantly taken efforts towards innovation. The company has set up over 53 windmills in Muppandal (Tamil Nadu) to generate inexpensive and eco-friendly captive power for the plants. This power is wheeled through the state utility transporter for consumption at the plant. DCBL have almost all the plants located close to its source of raw materials keeping freight and transport costs low, giving it an edge over competition.In 2009, DCBL announced the commencement of commercial production of 2.5 million tonnes greenfield cement project at Chinnakomerla village, Jammalamadugu, Kadapa district in Andhra Pradesh. The project was completed in a record time of 22 months and added to DCBL’s installed capacity of 3.5 million tonnes at Dalmiapuram in Tamilnadu. This plant produces 43 and 53 grade Dalmia brand Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) and Dalmia Vajram (Portland Pozzolana Cement - PPC) varieties.R&DDCBL has always believed in customer delight on a priority basis. When the company realised that their customers need support to overcome concrete related difficulties and achieve best results in construction, when their products are used for varying types and grades of concrete (under ever fluctuating site conditions), DCBL was inspired to start their own R&D lab dedicated to cement and concrete. The Dalmia Research Centre (DCR) was inaugurated on 14th September 2010, in the industrial heart of Balaji Nagar, Chennai.This R&D facility extends into an area of 2,500 sq. ft and comprises of various sections like customer cell, chemical, physical, and concrete lab, is a landmark in its own. It is fully equipped with state-of-the-art machinery for complete tests of concrete, cement and aggregates. This R&D lab will focus on solving practical problems faced by customers regarding concrete and cement help propagate good concrete practices. The lab will explore innovative means to exceed the customer expectations through research work. This will also be an arena for domestic and customer training. Dalmia Cement claims to be the first cement manufacturing company to set up an R&D lab for concrete in the country.Dalmia Tecmobile is an extension of the Dalmia Research Centre which helps to circulate the vital findings of the research. Tecmobile helps customers understand the quality of aggregates, water, and cement and prepare the appropriate mixture of concrete at site. With Tecmobile, adoption of quality and acquisition of best outcome at the concrete site has become an easy task, as Tecmobile is capable of giving faster and better service to a large customer base. Providing non-destructive testing for the concrete structures at site, Tecmobile has earned the reputation of being a confidence-building entity for customers before they proceed further with construction work.DRC further administers cement and concrete related training and opportunity to Dalmia Team, to contribute positively to the customers across the four South Indian states. It has Tecmobiles across these states to extend the research findings and provides tech services at the customer’s doorsteps. DRC offers short-term training on good construction practices to customers’ and dealers’ staff to help them perform better on field. Dalmia Research Centre also conducts research for new product development and organizes industrial trials at manufacturing.Branding and MarketingDCBl claims to be the only single unit cement manufacturer to successfully market their brands in core markets at prices on par with those of large consolidated/national players. Over 65 per cent of the cement consumption in India is catered to by the retail segment where branding and distribution are the critical drivers for leadership and this is where DCBL enjoys an edge over competitors by the use of efficient marketing strategies. DCBL enjoys a significant market share in the focus area of Tamil Nadu and Kerala, which are among the fastest growing in cement consumption.Unique selling pointsMagnesia perclase forms cracks in concrete after lying dormant for five years. Concrete made with Dalmia Cement has no chance of expansion cracks as it contains less than one per cent magnesia compared to 6 per cent max limit as per BIS standards. Alkali sensitive aggregates can cause late concrete expansion in cracks but the cement by Dalmia has very less chances of cracks as alkali content is lower than even “low alkali” cements. Lower the loss on ignition and insoluble residue, purer is the cement. In this way, fresh clinker, high quality gypsum and other raw materials enhances the purity of Dalmia Cement as it faces low loss on ignition and insoluble residue - only 40 per cent of the maximum specified by BIS. There are higher chances of concrete failure and collapse with more chloride but Dalmia Cement carries only a tenth of the max chloride content specified by BIS, which is best for reinforced cement concrete structures. High volume stability results in low chance of concrete rupturing. Concrete made with Dalmia Cement is more stable and will not rupture as it has high volume stability which is ten times better than that specified by BIS.CSR initiativesThe company is actively involved in organizing social welfare programmes, which provide health and other amenities. These programs are intended both for the public in the surrounding villages and the employees’ families. The programmes include running schools for the employees’ children, providing scholarships to outstanding students, operating milk distribution schemes and organizing various cultural activities, tournaments and games.Dalmia Institute of Construction (DIC) is one more the most notable initiatives taken up as a corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity by Dalmia Cement (Bharat) in 2008. The institute is located at Trichy in Tamil Nadu. This is a first of its kind in preparing students for supervising construction, especially usage of cement and concrete. DIC has envisaged a growing India with innumerable opportunities for infrastructure growth in the country and a contrary situation of shortage of skilled and professional manpower to fulfil the growing demands of the construction industry in the near future. DCBL has decided to launch a project of intellectual asset from the students of families below poverty line and train them for the modern construction industry.