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Expanding horizons in India: OPmobility's strategic vision inspired by 'Make in India'

By Gyanendra Sharma, Managing Director, OPmobility India - Exterior,

Added 24 April 2024

From supplying high-quality, eco-friendly automotive components for local needs to enhancing its global engineering and manufacturing competitiveness, OPmobility (formerly known as Plastic Omnium) outlines its contribution to India's thriving automotive sector and rapidly growing stature as a manufacturing powerhouse.

With a long-standing legacy spanning seven decades, OPmobility India (formerly known as Plastic Omnium) has positioned itself as a global leader in sustainable mobility solutions. Opting for India as its expansion ground, the company aims to establish top-notch plants and an engineering hub to meet local and global demands. This strategic move leverages India's thriving automotive sector and its growing reputation as a manufacturing powerhouse.

In alignment with our broader vision, this initiative taps into India's engineering talent, increasing demand, and advancing supply chain capabilities. It seamlessly supports the Make in India campaign, driving foreign investment and positioning India as a preferred manufacturing hub. Supplying high-quality, eco-friendly automotive components for local needs and enhancing our global engineering and manufacturing competitiveness are our core goals.

With OPmobility's roots deeply embedded in innovation, we envision the Indian automotive market as a hub for technological advancement and sustainable practices.

As the Indian market evolves, we foresee an emphasis on advanced hydrogen storage and smart, lightweight materials, aligning with India's journey towards a greener, more sustainable automotive landscape. In this transformative era, OPmobility positions itself to adapt and shape the changing landscape of the Indian automotive industry, contributing to progress and prosperity through our commitment to excellence and innovation.

As a result of increasing demand and consistent performance with both current and potential customers, we are delighted to announce the establishment of a new plant, the second one in Maharashtra. This expansion aims at highlighting our manufacturing capabilities, innovative processes, and solutions for future generations.

Recently, OPmobility announced the creation of OP'nSoft, a new activity dedicated to software development for its products and services. OP'nSoft focuses on mobility solutions that are more electric, connected, autonomous, and shared. OP'nSoft will enable OPmobility to offer its customers a unique range of integrated solutions and services, such as merging radar data processing software with lighting technologies. The India team will play a critical role in this development from our Bangalore engineering centre.

ALIGNING WITH INDIA'S MOBILITY VISION THROUGH INNOVATION AND SUSTAINABILITY

OPmobility aligns strategically with India's economic and political vision for mobility, embodying the collaborative spirit of the 'Make in India' initiative launched globally in September 2014. Riding on reformative policies, India has achieved unprecedented economic growth with a focus on sustainability. As the nation moves towards its ambitious goal of net zero emissions by 2070, it rapidly transitions to clean energy, enhancing manufacturing capabilities and promoting energy efficiency.

As a responsible industry leader, OPmobility proactively contributes to this shift through renewable energy adoption, spearheading hydrogen fuel innovations, and using recycled materials. These actions align with the nation's clean energy strategies and underscore our commitment to a greener, more resilient future in line with India's global commitments.

Recently, OPmobility introduced the thermoplastic tailgate for the XUV7OO in India, showcasing sustainable solutions with a positive response from end-users. The engineering team provided lightweight solutions, achieving a 5-star NCAP rating.

The application of plastics in automotive bodywork significantly contributes to cutting carbon emissions by improving aerodynamics, reducing vehicle weight, and enhancing fuel efficiency.

OPmobility's solutions offer up to 25 per cent weight savings compared to steel, which is crucial for innovation in the auto sector, where form and function cannot be compromised. Lightweight aerodynamic bodies play a vital role in reducing carbon emissions, especially in the era of electrification and the pursuit of maximum range. OPmobility designs innovative solutions, optimising existing designs and replacing metal components with plastics, achieving up to a 30 per cent system weight reduction.

MASTERING THE BALANCING ACT: QUALITY, SAFETY AND COST EFFECTIVENESS

In the dynamic Indian market, where both cost competitiveness and unwavering quality and safety standards are paramount, we skilfully address the needs of our customers. We fine-tune our offerings to provide cost-effective solutions while upholding OPmobility's global reputation for safety and premium quality.

This delicate balance reflects our steadfast customer-centric approach, ensuring each product embodies our legacy of delivering high-end solutions to global OEMs. Upholding stringent engineering and manufacturing standards, we have tailored advanced products to India's economic and regulatory landscape, meeting the intricate demands of our discerning clientele.

Notably, our local products have played a key role in our customers attaining top safety certifications, showcasing our contribution to elevating automotive safety standards in the region and ensuring aesthetically pleasing yet secure vehicles on Indian roads. Our products, essential for pedestrian safety, combine lightweight design with impactful styling to meet modern customer expectations.

HARNESSING INDIA'S GREEN REVOLUTION THROUGH INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIP

With the Indian government actively promoting eco-friendly transportation through initiatives such as the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme and reduced Goods and Services Tax (GST) on electric vehicles, there is a promising environment for innovation. OPmobility is strategically well-positioned to seize opportunities, aligning with India's infrastructure improvements and the national agenda for a greener automotive industry.

The enduring strategic partnership between India and France, established in 1947 and reinforced in 1998, provides a strong international framework. This Franco-Indian alliance promotes collaboration and growth, upholding a rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific region. Leveraging this robust bilateral relationship, we aim to contribute to the development goals of both nations within this partnership of equals—a commitment maintained since our inception in India.

A UNIQUE BLEND OF GLOBAL EXPERTISE AND LOCAL INSIGHT

In the competitive Indian market, we distinguish ourselves through integrated solutions that combine innovative technology, unparalleled expertise, and a profound understanding of the local automotive landscape. From sophisticated exterior parts with integrated lighting to advanced hydrogen fuel systems, our offerings prioritise sustainability, efficiency, and aesthetic appeal.

OPmobility stands out with a commitment to innovation, meeting current demands, and anticipating future trends. With a global footprint and extensive experience with leading OEMs, OPmobility ensures unmatched technical prowess and quality assurance in the Indian market. Our global perspective, combined with localised manufacturing and design, enables us to offer unique solutions tailored to the specific needs of the Indian automotive sector.

EMPOWERING A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE

In India, our corporate social responsibility policy embodies sustainable practices, safety priorities, and an inclusive work culture. Aligned with OPmobility's ‘Act for All™' programme, it focuses on care for people, responsible entrepreneurship, and sustainable business.

Safety is paramount, exemplified by 2,700 safe days with a goal of 3,000 in 2024, reflecting our unwavering commitment to employee well-being and environmental stewardship.

Energy-wise, our Bhamboli rooftop solar plant strives for exemplarity, as it contributes 25 per cent of the plant's energy and represents a significant step towards carbon neutrality, covering 70 per cent of emission targets.

In addition to our safety and environmental initiatives, we are dedicated to employee engagement and cultivating a positive and inclusive work environment. Our Indian facilities proudly hold the 'Great Places to Work®' certification, validating our commitment to fostering a supportive workplace culture. OPmobility India's "Youth Empowerment Programme" is a notable accomplishment, integrating nearly 100 young graduates in the past two years with a strong focus on promoting gender diversity. Achieving a remarkable 20 per cent female representation in all our locations is not only a success for us, but also a guiding example for corporate India, highlighting our dedication to overcoming barriers and advocating for equality.

Our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy goes beyond being a mere set of guidelines; it signifies a heartfelt commitment to shaping a better world and a brighter future, addressing aspects from environmental responsibility to employee well-being. It embodies our company's purpose: "Driving a new generation of mobility."

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