Business Opportunity: Pre-Stressed Concrete Sleepers

PSC sleeper refers to steel reinforced concrete sleeper, commonly used on railway tracks. Besides Indian Railways, power plants, refineries and cement plants also use sleepers for their rail tracks. Demand driver

Indian Railways has a network of over 65,000 kilometers encompassing length and breadth of the country.  The growing population and increasing economic activity has resulted in over-utilization of its existing network.  So much so that the trunk routes of the railways comprising merely 16% of the network carry about 50 percent of the work load. The Indian railways has been routinely upgrading its network (see Table 1), however the capacity upgradation has been far below the actual requirements and the network continues to remain congested.

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The pace of railway infrastructure upgradation has picked up over the past one year, driven by the government’s initiatives to improve quality and safety of Indian railways. The Railways has committed to building 7 kms of infrastructure per day in 2016-17, which will increase to 13 Kms per day in 2017-18 and 19 kms per day in 2018-19.  Railways have identified following priority projects (See table 2) to be taken up in the medium term.

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In addition to these, Indian Railways has also proposed to create a high speed corridor network of around 10,000 kilometers. In light of the above mentioned plans, the railways are likely to develop at least 5000-8000 kilometers of rail network per year, almost 30-40% more than in the past. Assuming that per kilomer of rail would need 1600 sleepers, these plans are likely to result in an annual demand of about 1.3 crore of sleepers.

Key suppliers

The sleeper industry is dominated by a few players who are present across the country. The current capacity of the industry is around 1 crore sleepers per annum. More details on the players are provided below.

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Given the expected increase in demand by 30% to 40%, there seems to be enough room for new capacities to come up. However, one needs to analyze the regional demand and supply balance carefully.

Govt approvals and Budget

Setting up a railway sleeper unit would require approvals from Railway RDSO (Research Design and Standards Organization) as well as the Zonal Railway office.

The process of manufacturing the PSC entails strengthening of concrete, casting it into pre-defined mould and curing it. There are two popular technologies: Long line and Short bench manufacturing, with short bench manufacturing being more popular in India.

The budget requirements for a capacity of 3-4 lakh sleepers per annum could be upwards of Rs. 15 crore. Further, one needs to consider the cost of the land, the sleeper plant would need to be located in the vicinity of a railway station for the ease of transport of sleepers.

How can we Help You?

We can help you assess techno economic feasibility of a sleeper manufacturing plant including the market assessment, regulatory compliance framework, capital requirements, machinery evaluation and profitability and return on investment.

Reach Us

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Business Opportunity: PET Sheets

PET sheets provide a convenient way of packaging product across a number of industries – consumer products, pharmaceuticals, food & beverages, etc. PET sheets are increasingly getting popular as a preferred option for packaging of food and pharma products, due to their visual appeal, their ability to keep the product safe from moisture and easy thermoform-ability.

The table below depicts various types and forms of packaging made out of PET sheets:

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Types of PET Sheets

Various PET sheets, based on their properties, are used in different applications. For example, CPET which has a very high working heat resistance (can withstand a temperature of up to 220 degree Celsius for more than 25 minutes) is used for microwaveable containers. The table below depicts the application of various types of PET Sheets.

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Market

PET sheet market is currently small, comprising just 1.5% of PET resin consumption in India. However, this market is rapidly growing and the resin consumed by PET sheet industry has nearly doubled from 6,400 tonnes/year in FY-14 to 11,150 tonnes/ year[1] in the FY 17.

Presently most of the PET sheet is manufactured by companies that make different kinds of packaging material. Two of the Hyderabad based players include Nirmala Pet A Pack Pvt Ltd and Spear Pet Pvt Ltd.

Process &Technology

Process
The process of PET sheet making broadly involves: Raw material pre-treatment, Extrusion and Drying & Winding/ Cutting the finished sheet

Fig1: Process flow

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Sometimes, the final product requires one more layer of PET or coatings, in such cases a co extruder will be required.

Single Versus Double Screw Extrusion

Screw is the most important part of any extruder. The screw is divided into three equal zones; feeding, transition, and metering. The primary functions of the three zones are:

  • Feed – taking in the resins and feeding it forward in the screw
  • Transition – compressing and melting the resin
  • Metering/ Pumping– homogenizing/ blending the melted resins and pumping out through the extruder at a constant rate.

There are mainly two types of extruders; Single screw and Twin screw.The single screw extruders typically cost less than twin screw, however they offer less operational flexibility.

Budget

The overall budget for starting a PET sheet extrusion unit with a minimum viable capacity i.e. 300 KG/hr would be Rs. 5 Crores. The machinery cost of twin screw and single screw alone would approximately be Rs. 3 Crores and Rs. 2 Crores respectively[2].

How Can We Help You?

If you are interested in setting up a PET sheet manufacturing unit, we can assist you in starting a processing unit. Our services include

  1. Market & Financial viability assessment
  2. Technical consultancy
  3. Detailed project report preparation
  4. Support in project execution

Reach Us

Call us @ 800 888 4932,

Write to us- bchhatre@finetrain.com

Visit us- www.finetrain.com

 

[1]Source: PRESENTATION OF RELIANCE INDUSTRIES LTD. – March1,2016

 

[2] Source: Based on discussion with extrusion machinery suppliers

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Business Opportunity in Ginger Processing

Ginger, one of the most important spice crops in India, is known for its aromatic and medicinal properties. Ginger is used as a flavouring agent in many food items.  Ginger powder and oil are extensively used in herbal medicines.

India is the largest ginger producer in the world, accounting for nearly 40 per cent of world’s production. In India, Assam is the largest cultivator, followed by Gujarat and Karnataka.  In Telangana, ginger grows in Medak district. India produces 3.85 Lakh tonnes[1] of ginger per annum and most of which is domestically consumed.

Pic 1: State wise breakup for ginger production in India 
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NOTE: Other states include Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Orissa, Mizoram, West Bengal, Uttaranchal, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Ginger Processing Technology

Ginger can be processed into three products; ginger powder, paste and ginger oil. The ginger oil manufacturing is typically not taken up by small businesses as it requires large capital investment towards oil distillation and oleoresin extraction plant. The ginger processing machinery is explained below.

Pic 2: Ginger processing Machinery 

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Key Players in Telangana

Ginger paste and powder: There are a number of manufacturers including national players such as Priya, Aachi, Mother’s, Smith & Jones, Hommade, and Eastern as well as local manufacturers. Some of the local brands include Capital, Red Boss, Mega Rose, Mayuri, MSR, Surya etc. These products are available in packing sizes of 50 grams to 1 kg.

Ginger oil: There are not many local players. Ginger oil manufacturers are largely based in Kerala. 

Budget

The capital requirements for ginger processing plants is discussed below.

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How Can We Help

We can help you start a “Ginger Processing Unit” through a number services including business viability assessment, market landscaping, technical consultation and project execution support.

Reach Us

Call us @ 800 888 4932,

Write to us- bchhatre@finetrain.com

Visit us- www.finetrain.com

[1] http://agriexchange.apeda.gov.in/Market%20Profile/one/GINGER.aspx

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E-WASTE RE-CYCLING – BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES

E-waste typically includes discarded computers and components, cathode ray tubes (CRTs), printed circuit boards (PCB), mobile phones, headphones, wires & cables, and white household goods such as liquid crystal display (LCD), plasma TVs, ACs, refrigerators etc.As per Industry body ASSOCHAM, India’s e-waste generation is likely to increase by nearly three times, from the existing 18 lakh MT per annum to 52 lakh MT per annum by 2020 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 30%[1].

Figure 1: E waste across cities and categories

Despite increasing number of registered recyclers/dismantlers in the country and large volume of E-waste generated, only about 5% of it is processed through formal sector. The remaining is either donated or goes to Kabadiwallas.For example, although Hyderabad generates about 32 000 metric tonnes of E-waste annually[2] the formal sector recyclers whose combined capacity is only around 20,000 tonnes do not get adequate waste.

[1]Source: The Hindu – article dated at June, 2016
[1]Source: ASSOCHAM-Frost & Sullivan study, April, 2016

The biggest e-waste recycling market in India is Delhi and approximately 30% to 40% of the e-waste in India lands there.

Process:

E waste recycling process can be divided into two parts; separation and size reduction of metals (aluminium/copper/steel) & plastics andextraction of precious metals. Majority of Indian E waste companies do not have refinery/precious metal recovery facility, due to high capital cost (over INR 8 crores for refinery of 1 tonne per day) and lack of adequate waste availability.

Figure 2: E Waste Dismantling Process

The quality of e waste also plays a big role in deciding the nature of recycling facilities. For example PCB (Printed Circuit Board) around which the business of E waste recycling revolves can be divided into various grades depending on the gold content. As per Umicore, a precious metal refinery in Belgium, the PCBs can be divided into four grades (Table1)

Table 1: Grades of Printed Circuit Boards
PCB  GradesAvailable in
low value (Gold content of 50 PPM or lessTV-boards, monitor boards, printer boards, cordless phones, calculators, shredded bulk material after Al-/Fe-separation  etc
medium value ( gold content of minimum 100 ppm)PC-boards, laptop-and handheld-computer circuit boards, etc.
high value (gold content of 200 ppm ore more)Circuit boards from mainframes, mobile phones, ICs, MLCCs
Source: www.umicore.com

Whilerefining is useful for high grade PCBs, for low/medium grade PCBS manual dismantling coupled with extraction of copper is a more viable option.

Current Players:

The total number of registered E-waste recyclers in India is 178[3]., whereas Hyderabad has 5[4].  Some of the large players are as under

[3]Source: List of Registered E-Waste Dismantlers/Recyclers in the country (as on 29-12-2016)
[4]Source: Telangana State Pollution Control Board

Table 2: National E-Waste Recyclers – India
NameHead QuarterActivitiesCapacity (MT/Yr.)Date of Est.
Auctus E-recycling solutions P Ltd.NoidaDismantling, Metal-Nonmetal separations, Plastic recycling218002011
E- IncarnationMumbaiData security, Refurbishing, Metal- Nonmetal recovery and disposal30002010
E-ParisaraaPvt. Ltd.BangaloreData destruction, Dismantling, & Precious metal extraction8820September, 2005
Earth SenseHyderabadDismantling, Segregation & Disposal> 40002000
Eco Centric Management P. LtdMumbaiE-waste management, CSR initiatives -donations, refurbishment.2500January, 2011
Eco Recycling Ltd. (ECORECO)ThaneE-waste recycling, EPR implementation72001994, Formerly InfotrekSyscom
Greenspace Eco ManagementDelhiDismantling, Refurbishing, Take back programs, etc.600002007
Ramky ewaste recyclingHyderabadCollection, Dismantling, Metal- Nonmetal recovery and Disposal10000
TES AMM IndiaKancheepuramE Waste Recycling, Takeback program300002005

 Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) for various options:

E waste recycling chain begins with a collection centre, which can be set up for Rs. 10 lakhs. However,standalone collection centres are not encouraged to register, unless they are being set up by a recycler/refurbished or an electronic product manufacturer.  A collection centre combined with a dismantling unit can be set up for around Rs. 45 lakhs.  In India, recycling is restricted to separation of Metal and Non-metal and granulation, as the technology for extraction of precious metal is not economical.

Figure 3: Capex required for Setting up aE waste processing unit

Regulatory requirements:

The industry is governed by e waste rules which specify the approvals and infrastructure requirements. The approvals need to be obtained from State pollution control body.

Table 3: APPROVALS
List of Approvals RequiredAuthorising BodyRemarks
CTO – Consent to OperateTelangana State – Pollution Control BodyThese are considered as pre-operations & establishment approvals.
CTE – Consent to Establish
One time authorisationSuch approvals also often have a validity period.
Certificate of registration & Proof of installed capacityDistrict Industries Centre.This is a common certificate of registration under any industry and serves as pre-requisite for approvals mentioned above.
Table 4: A GLANCE AT E-WASTE MANAGEMENT RULES (2016)
ParticularsCollection centresDismantling unitsRe-cyclersRefurbishers
Who can establishProducers/Refurbishers/Dismantlers/Recycler, standalone collection centre are not allowedAny Individual, Company, Society, they must have agreement with e waste generators/producers to procure e waste
ParticularsDismantling unitsRe-cyclersRefurbishers
Restrictions on certain operationsDismantling units are not allowed Shredding or Leaching of; Circuit Boards, Lamps, Cathode ray tubes CRTs, LCDs and Plasma TVs.None provided necessary infrastructure is in place. Not defined
Area required (per tonne of capacity)300 Sq. Metres.500 Sq. Metres150 Sq. Metres

Profitability:

The profitability of e waste recycling company depends on its access to waste and cost of waste. Cost of waste accounts for around 75-85 per cent of total cost of operations. The revenue depends on the quality of waste collected by the company. For simple dismantling operations, the estimated cost of waste and recovery per tonne is as under:

Table 5: Unit Economics of Dismantling 1 Tonne assorted E-waste
Sl.No.Material% Composition (by weight) Price INR/KGValue (INR)
1Mild Steel0.23153,450
2Stainless Steel0.08151,200
3Glass0.275.001,350
4Plastics0.2710.002,700
5Copper wire0.032006,000
6Aluminium0.03902,700
7Other material including precious material0.081008,000
8Hazardous Material0.01
 Overall value (INR)25,400
 Cost of waste (INR)20,000
 Gross Profit (INR)5,400
Source: Paper on Sustainable Electronic Waste Management and Recycling Process by S. Chatterjee, Department of Information Technology, Published in American Journal of Environmental Engineering, 2012

Other than the raw material cost, which has been discussed above, rentis another significant cost,Assuming a dismantling capacity of 5 tonnes per day, the area requirement @ 300 square meter per tonne of waste is 1500 square meters and rent can be up  to INR  3-5 lakhs per annum. Further, there are other fixed overheads such as labour and interest.   As such,one needs to process at least 3-5 tonnes per day, just to recover the costs.

Opportunities for a new enterprise

The e waste sector has grown at a slow pace over the last five years, largely due to lack of awareness about e waste rules,  absence of strict guidelines for disposal of e waste and challenges from the informal sector recyclers who are able to offer a better price for the waste. However, the regulations around e waste are expected to tighten and would bring unorganised sector into mainstream.

While opportunities for e waste recycling are only expected to increase in future, profitability would depend on the value addition done by the enterprise.  Therefore, aspiring e waste companies would also need to build skill sets in e waste segregation and in identifying reusable waste. We believe that

  1. Dismantling can be a profitable option if you are able to establish a network of waste collection centres and develop skill sets to identify reusable waste
  2. Setting up a refurbishing centre, where salvaged computers/phones can be repaired using new or old components should also be attractive.
  3. Recyclers would need a large network of collection centres or need to import waste to ensure capacity utilisation

How we can help you?

We can help you set up E waste recycling unit through a number of services including

  • Market viability assessment
  • Technical consultation and
  • Detailed project report preparation

Reach Us

Write to us: bchhatre@finetrain.comadmin@finetrain.com

Call us: 800 888 4932 /9032398367

Visit us: www.finetrain.com

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Fruits & Spices Processing Industry: Opportunities In AP & Telangana

The fruits and spices processing industry in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana is poised for a significant growth.  Bountiful availability of raw material along with positive policy environment that will build supply chain infrastructure is likely to create many new enterprises. This blog discusses the new opportunities, policy initiatives and funding availability for the industry.

What are the opportunities?

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Enabling environment 
Pic: 1 –  Food Processing Industry: Government Policy

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Note: Enclosed is a link to the Food Processing Policy of AP
Creation of Infrastructure for Food Processing Industry

GOI as part of its Mega food park scheme has sanctioned four food processing parks in Telangana. The details are as under

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Andhra Pradesh has SRINI Food Park in Chittoor, which is operational. Further, the state government has proposed to set up 8 mega food parks. Five of these parks will be located in the coastal districts of Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam and East Godavari. Three more parks are proposed in the Rayalaseema in Chittoor, Kurnool and Anantapur.

Funding for Food Processing Industry

A fund of Rs. 2000 crore has been created under NABARD to fund the term loan for food processing industry. The fund is available for food parks as well as units that are located in food parks. Key features of loan are as under:

  1. The loan is available to food processing units located in designated food parks[1]
  2. The list of activities that would be funded include fruits/vegetable/dairy/meat/aqua/herbs/nutraceutical/food flavours, colours, detailed list is available in the link here
  3. Maximum 75% of the project cost would be funded through term loan. Project cost would include site development/machinery/consultancy charges/capitalised working capital/pre-operative interest etc. If the individual is purchasing land (not leasing), 10 % of the land cost would also be included
  4. Term loan would be for a period of 7 years, The rate of interest would be linked to the prevailing interest
  5. Collateral would be required
How can we help you:

If you are interested in setting up a food processing industry, there is no better time than now. We at FineTrain can assist you in starting a fruit/spices processing unit. Our services include

  1. Market viability assessment
  2. Detailed project report preparation
  3. Technical support
Reach Us:

Write to us: bchhatre@finetrain.comadmin@finetrain.com

Call us: 800 888 4932 /9032398367

Visit us: www.finetrain.com

[1] Food parks and mega food parks promoted by Ministry of food processing, food parks/food processing industrial estates promoted by State governments, Food processing SEZ, Any other area that has related infrastructure and has been designated as food park, the MOFPI has provided a list of such entities

 

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Opportunity in Tamarind Processing in India

India is the world’s largest producer of Tamarind, with a production of over 2 lakh tonnes[i]. Tamarind is cultivated in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Telangana(See Figure 1)

How big is the market for Tamarind?

Majority of Tamarind production in India (1.5 lakh tonnes) is consumed in domestic market as dried Tamarind, Tamarind paste and pulp. Not just the fruit, even, Tamarind seed powder is extensively used in industries such as Textile, Paper, Confectionary, Cosmetics and Pharmaceuticals.

Domestic Market

In domestic market, Tamarind is mostly sold loose/ as a commodity, whereby shopkeeper weighs the required quantity and gives it to the customer.  The value added products such as Tamarind pulp and Tamarind powder are also sold in small quantities.

Tamarind prices in domestic market vary, depending on the crops output. The chart provided below depicts the average price of seedless Tamarind in the mandis across the country. Prices are lowest in the season (Feb to May) and then increase towards the second half of the year due to lower availability.

 

Source: : Spice board

Export Market

Around 50,000 tonnes of Tamarind is exported in various forms including fresh fruit, deseeded dry tamarind and Tamarind powder.  Product wise exports break up for Tamarind based products is provided in figure 2.

Source:  Director General Of foreign Trade

The majority of Indian Tamarind and related products are typically exported to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Egypt.Many Indian manufacturers also do contract manufacring for Middle East based Tamarind brands such as SARAS Tamarind, AAHAA Tamarind, and HARITHAM Tamarind.

What is the investment required to set up a Tamarind processing unit?

Tamarind is a seasonal crop, harvested in January and February and has to be stored in ambient conditions to maintain its color. Therefore, Tamarind based businesses requires ample storage space and cold storage facilities. The budget requirements for various Tamarind based products is available in Table 1.

Table 1: Budget for Tamarind processing plant
ProductUsage / MarketMachinery Total budget
Seedless TamarindMostly used in food preparationsDehulling, seed removing machines, pressing  and packaging machinesThe budget including machinery for a capacity of 2 tonnes per day, working capital and civil constructionwould be over Rs. 1 crore.
Tamarind PulpMostly used in food preparations and beveragesTamarind pulping machine, heating and packaging machinesThe overall budget including the working capital would be around Rs. 50 lakhs.
Tamarind Seed PowderUsed for its sizing properties in different industries such as Textile, Paper, Cosmetics, Pharmaceuticals etc.Three types of machines: Tamarind roasting and skin removing machine, grinding machine and machines to process Tamarind powder into starch.For an integrated plant (with all three machines), the budget would exceed Rs. 1 crore.

How can we help 

We can help you start “Tamarind Processing industry” through a number services including business viability assessment, market landscaping, technical consultation andexecution support

Reach Us

Write to us: bchhatre@finetrain.com, admin@finetrain.com

Call us: 800 888 4932

[1] Source: NHB, production figures are for 2014 -15.

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Business Opportunity: Animal Feed Manufacturing

India’s animal feed industry, currently valued at around $ 15 billion[1] is expected to double in the next five years.  The feed consumption is estimated to be 21.5 million tonnes, of which cattle feed accounts for 7.5 million tonnes, aqua feed 1 million tonne and poultry feed around 13 Million tonnes.

The state of Telangana and AP contribute to a large chunk of Indian feed consumption, as can be seen in the table below. Given the large size of the industry and its growth, it presents an attractive opportunity for small and medium enterprises.

Animal feed industry in AP and Telangana

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Competitive landscape of the Industry

The industry is competitive, with international, national and regional companies vying for the market share.  The table below provides information on important players in AP and Telangana.

Animal feed companies in AP and Telangana

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Manufacturing process and budget

The feed manufacturing operations comprise four steps; raw material preparation, mixing and grinding the feed, palletisation and packaging. The plant capacity typically starts from 2-3 tonnes per hour to 15 tonnes per hour.

Animal feed manufacturing process

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An automated plant with a capacity of 3- 5 tonnes per hour can cost up to Rs. 40 lakhs. Considering the machines and raw material inventory and infrastructure required to store the raw material, the budget requirement for the unit could be up to Rs. 1 crore.

How can we Help

  • We can help you assess viability of animal feed and related opportunities through a number of services including market research, detailed viability assessment and technical consultation.
  • We also offer support in executing your ideas by connecting you with sector experts and professionals.

Reach Us

Call us @ 800 888 4932,

Write to us- bchhatre@finetrain.com

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[1] As per Yes Bank report on The Indian Feed Industry – Revitalising Nutritional Security

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Budget 2017-18: Incentives For Small Businesses

A number of measures revolving around government’s key schemes of Mudra, Start-up India, Make in India and Digital India have been announced. These relate to increasing access to capital, promoting domestic manufacturing and increasing tax compliance of small businesses.  Details are enumerated below.

Increasing access to capital

  • A Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund would be set up with a corpus of Rs. 8,000 crores.
  • Lending target under Mudra scheme has been doubled to Rs. 2.44 lakh crores in 2017-18 from Rs. 1.77 lakh crores.

Clean India/digital India- Incentives for filing taxes

  • The corporate income tax rate for companies with a turnover of less than Rs. 50 crores has been brought down to 25% from 30 % earlier.
  • Corporate income tax rate for companies with a turnover of less than 2 crores: Such companies are not required to maintain books and currently 8% of their turnover is assumed to be their profit and is liable for taxes. The presumptive rate of 8% has been reduced to 6 %, for turnover received by non-cash means (Sales receipt received through bank account or other digital means).
  • Start-ups: These benefits are available to start ups registered between April 2016 to April 2019, under start-up India scheme
  • The time period for availing 3 year income tax holiday[1] by a start-up has been extended to 7 years as against 5 years earlier, thus providing start-ups a longer window to claim the benefit.
  • Also, condition of original promoter holding 51% shares of voting rights for start ups for claiming the tax deduction against carry forward losses has been relaxed. As per the new condition, original owner only needs to continue to hold a stake in the start-up.

Make in India – Incentives for manufacturing in India

  • Renewable energy: Customs duty on a number of components that go into making solar power panels /modules has been reduced.
  • LED: Excise duty on components/fixtures of LED lights has been reduced.
  • Water purifiers: Customs duty for parts of RO membrane for household filters has been brought down to facilitate domestic manufacturing of RO membrane. The custom duty on import of RO membrane has been increased.
  • Devices for cashless transactions: Customs duty concessions have been announced for import of POS reader, micro ATMS, finger print reader, Iris scanner.

For detailed information on the changes in excise and customs duty, please click here to refer the Budget Sheet 2017-18.

Conclusion

Budget incentivises small businesses to manufacture locally and to pay their taxes. These are good steps as such and would help the industry in the long run.

How can we help you?

FineTrain is an advisory firm for small businesses. We help our clients grow their businesses. We can help you analyse new business opportunities or generate leads for your existing business.

Contact us

bchhatre@finetrain.com

800 888 4932

 

[1] As per start-up India scheme, the start-ups are eligible to claim 100 per cent income tax deduction under section 80- IAC, however they are liable to pay MAT (minimum alternate tax ,paid on book profits), which can be set off in later years

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Rise of B2B E-commerce: Opportunity For Small Businesses

The competition among B2B ecommerce portals has been heating up with the entry of several new players who are looking to expand their presence across products and geographies. These portals are wooing small businesses to transact on their platforms with offers to support them with marketing, logistics and even credit. The rise of B2B ecommerce presents an interesting opportunity to small businesses, who can leverage it to enter new markets and gain more insights on their customers.

Table 1: Leading Indian B2B e-commerce platformCapture

With the advent and increasing use of e commerce platforms, some of the issues faced by small businesses in selling online have eased, as these portals provide much needed marketing and logistics support. Small businesses can harness the power e-commerce opportunity through the following strategies.Small businesses find it difficult to sell online as the competitive landscape for selling goods online is very different from offline market place, where the sale is relationship based and competition is mostly local.  As such, to sell online, the product should be searchable, able to compete with local as well as national products and should be delivered in a timely and efficient manner.

 Key strategies for Small businesses

 Document the sale process

Since sale of industrial machinery part is a consultative process, a small business owner typically spends most of his/her time consulting with the clients to customise machinery to client’s requirements. For example, a ghee machine supplier needs to understand the manufacturing process (manual or automated), raw material (milk, cream or butter), and capacity and cold storage facilities of the client before designing the machine.

Small businesses need to document the sales consultation process in detail, which can then be used to design automated systems that can accommodate different buyer requirements and provide ballpark pricing.

Enable product comparison

In order to differentiate itself among a number of products available online, the small business needs to provide detailed information on the product quality, raw material, manufacturing process and testing infrastructure available with the company. For example, the quality of a plastic product would depend the manufacturing process (injection moulding machine, extrusion machine or a hand layup process), polymer used and quality control measures adopted by the manufacturer.  Precise product description and comparison would also reduce product return, a major pain point for small businesses.

Segment your market

Small businesses must ensure that ecommerce doesn’t cannibalise their sales from existing sales channels (sales representatives and distributor channels). Therefore it’s important to segment the products into different categories depending on the business size, complexity of the product, buying cycle, discounts offered, geography, demography etc.  Thereafter, the portfolio could be clearly demarcated into segments that would be sold through both the e-commerce and traditional platforms/channels.

There is no better time to start selling industrial goods online. Small businesses should have a strategy in place to select the products to be sold through e commerce route, build capacity to meet the requirements of new customers and to choose the right ecommerce platform.

How can we help you?

FineTrain is a consulting firm for entrepreneurs, we help our clients grow their businesses. We can assist you in getting your business ready for e commerce and in planning your ecommerce strategy.

Contact us

bchhatre@finetrain.com

800 888 4932

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Business Opportunity: Become a Channel Partner for Air Cooling Systems

ICEBERG’s O-Zone Air Cooling systems are an ecofriendly alternative to Air-Conditioning Systems, ideal for Hotels, offices, retail showrooms, function halls and large houses. These are wall mounted elegant looking cooling systems which provide homogeneous cooling with 100% fresh air and save 80 – 90% of your power.

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Company Profile:

ICEBERG cooling and Freezing systems private limited (ICEBERG), specializes in manufacturing technologically advanced cooling systems for Industrial and domestic use. Its clients include   large industries such as ONGC, SAINT-GOBAIN, TFL, and IVRCL, a number of residential houses, party halls and restaurants. ICEBERG is based in Hyderabad and has been in business for over a decade.

Product Attractions:

  • Elegant looking: O-Zone air cooling systems are Wall Mounted and looks like an AC.
  • Efficient cooling: Reduces the room  temperature  by 10-15 degrees as compared to the outside temperature
  • Automated water supply: The water supply comes from the tank and stops on its own when the cooler is full.
  • Less Noise Level: System is less noisy than other coolers
  • Less Power Bill: Brings down your power bills significantly as compared to AC
  • No Inside Space Taking: System is either mounted on the wall or ceiling.
  • After Sale Service: Comes with one year warranty

Opportunity for the Channel Partner:

The channel partner can be an entrepreneur looking to start a new business as well as an existing enterprise looking to diversify their operation for extra income.

Interested entrepreneurs can reach us at:

Contact Person: Revanth Duggana

Ph: 8886666567

Email: revanth.duggana@finetrain.com

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