The Telegraph
Monday , February 17 , 2014
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Tata Steel processing arm aims high

Chakravorty: Growth focus

Calcutta, Feb. 16: Tata Steel Processing and Distribution Ltd (TSPDL), India’s largest steel services provider, has embarked on an ambitious plan to more than double output in the next four years to keep pace with the growing demand in India.

The company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Steel, will invest Rs 830 crore to take production to 4 million tonnes from 1.6 million tonnes.

“Our growth will be in tandem with the expansion of Tata Steel as well as market demand,” Sandipan Chakravorty, managing director of TSPDL for over a decade, said.

The company, which cuts and shapes steel strips for the specific needs of customers, especially the auto industry, has eight processing centres across the country, while the tenth is coming up at Kalinganagar, Odisha, where Tata Steel is putting up a 3-million-tonne plant.

Nearly half of the proposed investment is being made at this new centre only. Moreover, new facilities are being added in Jamshedpur as well as Chennai, which specifically caters to auto clients.

“Our growth will be two-fold: we will not only build new centres but add more capabilities and capacities in existing ones,” Chakravorty said.

However, TSPDL has decided not to chase rupee growth only. “Our vision is to be a global benchmark in the industry for excellence in service,” Chakravorty said.

It is in the process of appointing a consultant to identify areas of excellence. Boston Consulting Group and Accenture are in the race for the job.

“We now want to go an extra mile, going beyond the immediate need of the customer, co-develop product for their strategic need. It is changing the business model from pure transaction to relationship,” the MD said.

In an interview with Tata Review, an internal magazine of the group, Chakravorty had pointed out that the company had patented two processes, one for length measurement and other for the automatic segregation of sheets.

Once TSPDL reaches the 4-million-tonne capacity, it will be one of the top 10 steel processing companies in the world.

But TSPDL is hoping to keep an edge over others for its wide presence which gives flexibility to service customers on time, on demand, without fail.

“There is hardly anything to differentiate in terms of product. But you can always maintain an edge by providing superior service,” he explained.