Vinay Laddha, Karnataka Cement Udyog
Vinay Laddha, Karnataka Cement Udyog, has been a distributor since 22 years. The company distributes Birla White cement. "We have grown substantially over the years and have been no 1 in the state of Karnataka from 1991-2008, and 2nd in 2009 & 2010," said Laddha. When asked about the uniqueness of the product, Laddha replied, "Quality and whiteness, makes Birla white cement, the largest selling cement". The monthly dispatch is around 210-230 MT and the company keeps a stock of 15-20 MT every day, since the depot is in Bengaluru. About volatility in price, Laddha replied, "Volatility affects us badly. White cement is not a bulk using cement and sudden change of prices hampers us since we cannot supply the material in the market at old rates before taking into effect the new rates and sudden change of price means an added financial loss to us. He suggested that the price revision should never be sudden and it should be pre-informed atleast 5-6 days in advance. "We supply the cement to the retailers and to direct consumers," said Laddha and added, "Increase in diesel/petrol prices directly affect us since the procurement and supply costs increase. As soon as the diesel price increases, the transporters go on strike and get a price hike, so procurement cost goes up and we have to bear with the same since the White Cement market is sensitive to take such hikes unlike grey cement where they accept weekly price hikes." About the delays at toll post, he suggested that government has to streamline things and should probably take details from manufacturers and compare their sales with the purchase of the dealers rather than harassing for small clerical mistakes at the check post. When asked about the interest he has to pay to the banks, he replied, "It is 13 per cent and has gone up over the years."