Leading the pack
From a humble start around three decades back, Rajiv Group and its largest group company, Atlantis Products have come a long way to become a leader in the woven sacks and fabrics business and other diversified domains.
Rajiv Vastupal is the CMD of Rajiv Group
, a diversified group with total revenues of Rs 550 crore in 2010-11. The largest manufacturing arm of the Rajiv Group, Atlantis Products, has emerged as one of the largest producers of woven sack bags and fabrics in the country with significant part of its sales coming through exports to over 10 countries globally.
A tete-a-tete with Rajiv Vastupal, CMD, Rajiv Group
Please comment on the early start-up of Atlantis Products. When and where did you start operations?
Our manufacturing facility is based at Dholka, 40 km from Ahmedabad, Gujarat. We started operations in 2007, which we had taken over from an existing unit. By 2009, we had replaced all the old machinery and equipment with new machines having the latest technology, less power consumption and improved efficiency. Currently in 2012, we have two new tape lines with a combined capacity of 1 mt / hour. We have 94 installed looms and more 20 looms have been ordered for commissioning in March 2012. We have state-of-the-art lamination plant, liner plants and have currently added ultrasonic cutters to enable us to provide our customers with world class fabric.
What has been your greatest achievement and challenges till now?
I started out with an investment of Rs 39,000 in 1980, when I created a joint venture company at Silvassa. This company manufactured narrow fabric from Swiss machines. In spite of great efforts, the venture failed due to high debt, excess capacities, plant overruns and also because the end product was probably ahead of its time. My second business dealt with the manufacture of hardware rivets using German machinery. Unfortunately, this too did not pan out. I was lucky with my third venture, which was trading in chemicals. After trading in chemicals, petrochemicals, electrical equipment, switchgear and cables, I moved into manufacturing of woven sack bags, panel boards, wires & cables and light fittings. Today, Rajiv Group, is a diversified group with total revenues of Rs 550 crore in 2010-11. We have set our eyes upon increasing the group's turnover to Rs 700 crore over the next two years.
Do you have any future plans of expansion of your woven sacks and fabrics business? If yes, please elaborate on the same.
We have recently increased our production capacity from 6000 tpa to 9000 tpa. With the installation of the new tapeline plant of Lohia, the company now has two tapelines with 600 kg/hr and 450 kg/hr capacity respectively and 94 newly installed circular looms, state-of-the-art lamination plant along with two liner plants. We also plan to have a marketing office in Dubai to cater to the African and Russian markets.
How big is the market for woven sack bags in cement sector in India? Is there any competition?
The current total production capacity of cement is 266 mt and huge expansion plans are in the pipeline for cement companies. As per the current estimates of CMA, the plan is to grow at CAGR of 8 - 10 percent. PP bags requirement is roughly 335 KT; around 500 crore bags every year so there is ample room for every player. To put with only cement demand on YOY basis, new capacity of around 65 KT (roughly 100 crore bags) will be needed going by very conservative estimates.
Is there any special material or fabric used for woven sacks used in cement packaging?
Cement fabric is a very conventional and basic material. Nowadays, new technologies like block bottom bags are in the market with total automation and better printability surface.
Do you also have an export market for your company's woven sacks? If yes, which are the countries to which you market your products?
Atlantis has emerged as one of the leading manufacturer and exporter of woven sack bags in Gujarat. Almost 50-55 percent of woven sack bags are exported to countries in Latin America, Canada and Middle East.