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  • CII's Sustainability Award - 2012 for TVS Motor Company

    New Delhi, January 14, 2013:

    TVS Motor Company has been awarded the prestigious Certificate of Commendation for Significant Achievement at the CII-ITC Sustainability Awards constituted by the CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development. The award was presented by Honourable President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee on 14 Jan 2013 at New Delhi.

    Mr. S Devarajan, Sr. Vice President, TVS Motor Company, receiving the CII-ITC Sustainability Awards 2012, Certificate of Commendation for Significant Achievement from Shri. Pranab Mukherjee, Honorable President of India in New Delhi recently.

    TVS Motor Company was chosen after a rigorous assessment process based on the concept of Triple Bottom Line (Economic, Environmental and Social Dimensions) which involves two stages and is an eight month long assessment with 1000 man hours dedicated to it.

    The Sustainability Awards focus on the strong link between the corporate reputation and customer trust, and feed into building brand value and public positioning of companies.

    M&M working on more models in commercial vehicle segment

    Automotive major Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd is working on developing more models in the commercial vehicle segment by plugging gaps to suit certain specific requirements.

    These could be in the area of cold storages, logistics and personal captive requirement of local businesses and some offered through customisation, according to Mahesh Kulkarni, Senior General Manager, Mahindra & Mahindra.

    Addressing a press conference here to launch its latest Bolero Maxi Truck Plus in South India, he said the vehicle has been designed to meet the requirements in urban areas of the country providing the last mile transport.

    The growth of retail in urban areas of the city, restrictions on movement of bigger trucks into busy city locations and requirements for logistics are all driving the growth of this commercial vehicle segments, he said.

    In bumper-to-bumper traffic with heavy payloads and flyovers requiring good pulling power, companies require vehicles that suit city requirements. This is one of the reasons for growth of the commercial utility vehicle segment last year.

    However, the market has been relatively sluggish during the year so far. Sentiment has been impacted, he said.

    "We have a share of about 54 per cent in the pick-up and utility vehicle segment, which grew by about 41 per cent last year. We are confident of growing above the industry growth. The SIAM has projected growth of about over 10 per cent in the segment," he said.

    Answering queries, Kulkarni said the company is gearing up to launch its sub-four meter car Mahindra Verito called Vibe. This will attract lower duty compared to its sedan Verito and create the necessary buzz in the market.

    Exide Industries steps up 'value engineering' of products

    Faced with lower demand from automobile manufacturers, Exide Industries Ltd is now pinning its hopes on cost-cutting to improve margins.

    The country's largest lead-acid battery maker reported a mere three per cent growth in net profit to Rs 146 crore during January-March 2013 against the previous year quarter. Much of the profit growth was contributed by 5.5 per cent price increase in February.

    "We have taken some steps for value engineering of products. We are hopeful to do better in the following quarters," newly appointed Managing Director and CEO, P.K. Kataky, told Business Line. Value engineering is a method to cut costs without compromising the product's quality.

    Expressing concern about the gloomy industrial outlook and the policy stalemate in Delhi, Kataky said that OE (original equipment) demand from automobile sector continued to be low in the current quarter.

    "There is a negative growth in OE demand. However, our replacement sales are increasing," he said. Automobile batteries contribute nearly 60 per cent of the company's annual business. Exide blamed "de-growth in the OE business in the four-wheeler segment and less than expected growth in the two-wheeler" for the poor run in January-March 2013 quarter.

    On possibilities to tap the neighbouring Asean (Association for South East Asian Nations) market, Kataky said the company was exporting batteries in the region through its Singapore-based outfit Chloride Batteries S E Asia Pte Ltd (CBSEA). However, there is no plan to step up activities in overseas market due to poor margins.

    Asean is a trade block comprising Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

    "We are exporting some batteries in the region. However, there is no plan to step up export activity as prices are better in the Indian market," he said.