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Focussed strategy

By Niranjan Mudholkar,

Added 15 October 2020

We shall focus on new product development to meet the market requirements in order to maintain our leadership position in the market,” says Nikhil Sawhney, Vice Chairman & Managing Director, Triveni Turbine Ltd.


You have taken charge in 2012. How’s been the journey since then? Are you satisfied with the progress so far?
Yes, I am satisfied with the overall progress of the company since 2012. There has been significant growth in the turnover and profitability of the Company and now we are the second largest industrial steam turbine manufacturer in 5 MW to 30 MW segment, globally. In terms of manufacturing capabilities, we commissioned our second state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in the outskirts of Bengaluru which adheres to Industry 4.0. In 2012, we had limited exposure in international market, but over these years, with focused market strategy, our exports grew by 21 percent CAGR and now we are present in over 70 countries and continue to grow.
Since Triveni is a technology driven company, design and product development is key. We have been working relentlessly to improve the efficiencies of our products while making them more cost competitive through a dedicated Research & Development program. The world-class Research and Development unit of the Company is recognised and registered as an in-house R&D unit by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), Government of India. In line with industry trends, the Company has been diversifying into different types of turbines and other renewable energy products that focus on high efficiency cycles, including injection applications, supercritical CO2 turbines etc. We have in place a robust IP strategy for the creation and protection of our long-term IP assets, to secure and preserve its technological advantage over competitors. We have also filed 269 IPRs globally till March 2020.

Where does Triveni stand in terms of market competition?
Triveni Turbines’ reliable, robust and efficient solutions have made it one of the world’s most reputable and dependable turbine OEMs. It is the second largest manufacturer of industrial steam turbines in the sub 30 MW range globally.
With more than one billion operating hours of turbine fleet, the company has installed over 4,000 steam turbines generating a total power generation capacity of 13GW across 20 industries. Triveni is present in over 70 countries around the world.
Our steam turbines are used in diverse industries, ranging from sugar, steel, textiles, chemical, pulp and paper, petrochemicals, fertilisers, solvent extraction, metals, palm oil to food processing and more. Triveni offers steam turbine solutions for industrial captive and renewable power. Its products and manufacturing facilities are approved by users, EPCs, PMCs and OEMs globally.
The company’s product portfolio comprises a large range of Backpressure, Condensing and API compliant steam turbines that are easily customised to suit sector-specific and customer-specific needs. Equipped with a choice of impulse and reaction technology, these turbines can work across a wide range of pressure and flow applications.
Industry requirement is evolving regularly, end users constantly want to achieve enhancement of the efficiency of the power plant, as a result recovery of energy and reducing the wastage of energy becomes very important in this sector.
Triveni REFURB is a vertical, focussing on efficiency improvement of the older generation turbines across all brands other than the ones manufactured by Triveni. It also caters to all rotating equipment i.e., Compressor rotor, Generator Rotor, Gas Turbine rotors and spare parts. All refurbished rotors are subject to High Speed Balancing with vibration limits as per API standards. Expanding our portfolio and our foot print, we are working on almost all OEMs’ turbines across the globe and supporting customers at short notice.

Tell us about the manufacturing capabilities and capacities of Triveni Turbines.
Triveni manufactures turbines at its world-class manufacturing facilities in Bengaluru, India. Driving our efficiencies are our two state-of-the-art production facilities, equipped to providing manufacturing of critical components, assembly, testing and refurbishing services, benchmarked to industry best practices and international standards as endorsed by its various certification awards from ISO, IES, BS, API, NEMA, DIN, ASME, CE, PED, AGMA, TEMA, and HEI; and tools and technologies such as Six Sigma, Kaizen, Small Group Activities, and Root Cause Analysis.
The world-class manufacturing plants are built to handle complex processes and large-scale production with total efficiency at optimal costs, with minimal wastage. The manufacturing facilities are Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) – Green Building Platinum certified for green, eco-friendly and energy-efficient standards.
Over the last decade, our Triveni REFURB team has worked on machines of most OEMs successfully and supported customers across the globe in ensuring healthy operating systems. We reverse engineer the whole turbine or compressor, either at site or at our works using the 3D white light scanners to scan the components, developing the same and generating working models with a 3D printer before going into mass production.

How has the Covid-19 outbreak affected Triveni Turbines? How are you dealing with it?
Given that the Covid-19 situation is still grim in many parts of the world, we believe it will take some more months to get back to normalcy, particularly in the international market, based on the enquiry leads and customer feedback. In the domestic market, too, despite a good enquiry pipeline, we believe there could be delay in order finalisation and deliveries in H1. However, things are expected to improve in H2 for the domestic market.
Overall, based on the current situation, the Company may witness a decline in revenues and order booking in the first half of FY21. However, the Company is geared up to meet the deliveries and order bookings as and when the market improves, and would be able to capitalise on such developments in the shortest possible time. All attempts are being made to minimise the impact but certain circumstances are not within our control, and would depend on our customers’ situation, in terms of funds. With tight control on expenses such as manpower rationalisation, administrative overhead reduction, continuation of our value engineering and cost reduction programme aggressively, we believe we will be able to maintain our margins and generate positive cash flows.

How has Triveni Turbines responded to the Covid-19 outbreak in terms of its responsibility towards its employees, other stake holders and overall society?
The Company has scaled up its safety regulations to address the Covid-19 pandemic needs. Regular sanitisation, social distancing and wearing of mask are strictly enforced in our factories and offices premises. All safety directives issued by both Central and State Governments are strictly adhered. Thermal screening and hand sanitising are being done for all persons entering the office premises. Awareness on prevention of Covid-19 is being created on daily basis among all sections of employees, including contractual employees.

What are you plans to grow overseas?
We are the domestic market leader in steam turbines in sub 30 MW range. We have maintained our dominance consistently over the years. The Company’s ability to provide hi-tech precision engineered-to-order solutions has made it one of the most trusted brands within the sector. Our repeat customers validate the strength of the Company’s leadership position in steam turbines. Over the past few years, the Company’s foray into international market is also gaining momentum and Triveni competes with all major steam turbines manufacturers across the globe quite effectively and increased share of exports in the sales demonstrates its competitiveness in the steam turbines market globally.
Triveni has consistently strengthened its position by establishing strong global footprint through its network of offices, offering wide range of state-of-the-art steam turbines, coupled with excellent aftermarket portfolio to meet the needs of our customers round the clock.
The growth potential of foreign subsidiaries to expand in international space is encouraging. Through these foreign subsidiaries, the Company has increased its capabilities to connect with global EPC players and industries. The connections have enhanced the visibility of the Triveni Turbines brand and future business potential. The Company expects that the foreign subsidiaries will further augment business growth in the near future.

Do you think technology can play an important role in helping manufacturing companies unlock and deal with the New Normal?
As part of the new normal, the Company has also strengthened its digitalisation drive, through adoption of various tools such as Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR). The team is currently undertaking many activities through the digital platforms, including successful erection and commissioning of steam turbines remotely. And, all the customer requirements are met electronically i.e. response to enquiry, discussion on the engineering, technical and financial aspects. The customers are also experiencing as well as adapting to this new normal practice and this approach is helping to keep our employees secure.

What is your outlook for the next two years?
Our long-term vision is to maintain market leadership in the sphere of our operations and also to augment our strategic focus on scaling our technological prowess, coupled with high quality manufacturing, and building a strong aftermarket support system. We shall focus on new product development to meet the market requirements in order to maintain our leadership position in the market.

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