Carrying A Legacy Forward
Founded in 1983 by Mr Ved Kalra, Chemiplant Engineering is one of the leading manufacturers of Pharmaceutical and Chemical Process Equipment in India. What started off as a small manufacturing unit in Mumbai has grown to become a professionally-managed, customer-centric and a major supplier at a 50,000 sq. ft. manufacturing unit at Ankleshwar, Gujarat. The vision of Mr Kalra of establishing his own manufacturing unit and making it big in the pharma machinery industry has been taken forward by Sameer V Kalra, MD, who added technology and innovation to the mix.
Chemiplant Engineering infuses technological advancement with innovative thought processes and an enviable skill set across all spectrums, and boasts of expertise in providing customized solutions that meet customer needs. The client base of Chemiplant Engineering includes organizations in the fields of Pharmaceutical, Chemical & API, Biotech, Food & Dairy and Varied Research Labs Businesses. For many worldwide brand names, the company proves to be a flexible and customeroriented partner. High quality, durability and maintenance friendliness, optimum designs, and above all, tailor-made equipment is its forte.
The journey that began under the dynamic leadership of Mr. Ved Kalra four decades ago has been evolving through the years, and is now scaling new heights in the industry. By adding innovative process equipment to its list, the company has gained an edge over the competition. It has also an environmentally friendly approach, in addition to being a licensed manufacturer.
“We Think, We Engineer, We Process & We Accomplish” Our business idea supports this vision by offering a wide range of well-designed, customized and accurate machines.
THE ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNEY
An entrepreneur by choice, Mr Sameer Kalra has dedicated his life to continue the legacy his father established. Born in a family where business is a part of dinner-time conversations, business runs in the blood for Mr Kalra. He credits his dad for his induction into this venture. The Founder of Chemiplant, Mr Ved Kalra, has vast experience in the field, having worked with engineering giants.
Chemiplant was a dream accomplished of having his own production unit, which he cultivated with a lot of passion and ambition. His drive to make his business successful inspired Mr Sameer to follow his footsteps. He joined the venture twenty years ago, by which time Chemiplant had become a renowned name in the industry with a number of big and trusted clients.
“My primary objective now is to design strategies and action plans towards the goal of making Chemiplant Engineering a world-known name by 2025, and revamp systems wherever needed to outpace competition,” says Sameer Kalra
Mr Kalra leads a team of dedicated experts, and believes in the school of thought that any company is as good as its team. He has aligned the team’s mission with Chemiplant’s vision and motivates everyone to work with a growth mind-set.
“As a leader, I always try to lead by example and keep setting small achievable targets for my team spread over a period of time. Just setting targets is not enough, so I ensure that they get adequate training from experts in the field which keeps them focused and enjoy their work,” he states.
He believes that trust is established from both sides. He trusts his team, and finds himself blessed to have trustworthy people with him. “I see a lot of energy around me which is built only because of trust. We have a mix of people who have been with us for fifteen years plus, as well as newcomers.
The challenge for the newcomers is lack of experience for which I spend a lot of time with them. It is challenging to maintain synergy between the old and the new. I personally believe in new people and at the same time value the knowledge and learnings that come from the experienced team members. Once you hit this balance, your team will be unstoppable.”
Chemiplant always believed in investing in training and mentoring for its team, which has brought visible changes in the working style and approach of team members. The MD believes in personally communicating with each of the team members on a regular basis so that they are in a comfortable space and find him approachable.
“For me, my team is my strength and when my team stands out in the crowd, Chemiplant automatically will. One word of gratitude to my team here who stood by me during the pandemic and helped Chemiplant grow.”
Mr Kalra has always been passionate about engineering, and got a degree in it before joining the company. His career in engineering aligned with the aspirations his father held for him, and he found it quite exciting to learn the trade by his father’s side. “It was fun learning the nuances of the industry and contributing to the growth of an organization my dad so fondly started,” he reminisces. Under his leadership, Chemiplant has seen tremendous growth over the years, expanding from local to global, and with an even greater vision in mind.
The journey has been a roller coaster ride for Mr Kalra, and he learnt a lot in these years. “Learnings are never ending and I yearn to learn, train and make Chemiplant reach newer heights.” Mr Sameer Kalra hopes to create a legacy and not an inheritance, for Chemiplant to always be remembered as a strong brand in the pharmaceutical machinery industry, as a lot of effort has been put into building it that should not go to waste.
The entrepreneur is an avid reader, and finds books to be the best source of knowledge and encouragement. The practice of reading has helped him know and understand beyond what he learnt in college. The two subscriptions he recommends, with respect to the industry he is in, are Chemical Today and Chemical Industry Digest. Mr Sameer is also passionate about learning new techniques and skills, and invests his time in gaining knowledge of technology that can be implemented in his factory. Innovation, thus, is at the core of Chemiplant.
He wants to play a part in taking India ahead in technology when it comes to machinery manufacturing. Gradually, the company has successfully commissioned its machines all over India. Now his vision is to go global, as there is huge potential for Indian manufacturers in the global market.
Mr Sameer is open to inviting young dynamic people to reach out to him and to collaborate with them, as he finds the different approach to life the new generation has inspirational.
“These Solopreneurs actually inspire me the way they look into making possibilities into opportunities. They think out of the box so someone with an entrepreneurial mind-set will always be the right collaboration for me,” he says
WHAT SETS IT APART
Chemiplant claims to be the expert in providing innovative solutions. The machines are tailor made to meet customer needs. That is the USP the company provides: it is flexible and has the required infrastructure to make products exactly the way the customers need. The main mission is to always develop “Fit & Forget” and the team strives to deliver the very best to their customers. The company has a state-ofthe-art manufacturing facility spread over 50000 sq. feet. It maintains stringent quality control and monitors every stage of production right from the time the raw material enters the factory till the time the final product is sent out for delivery.
Making these machines need detailed planning and execution and Chemiplant is fully equipped in this area with the skill and will to deliver what the customer wants. Its team of qualified and dedicated engineers work round the clock to ensure quality and meet delivery timelines. They endeavor to make every first customer their permanent customer.
Chemiplant has developed a unique technology for its Japanese customers, who have become a regular client at this point. The customized solutions provided by the company are unique to it in the industry. The African market is also quite a favorable market for Chemiplant, and the company is looking at collaboration opportunities with developed countries to have a mix of their technology and its own. At the same time, it is looking to develop technology for underdeveloped countries so that we are able to achieve its vision. Being in the industry for so long, Chemiplant believes they have the strength to make machines that are customer-need based.
They see the larger picture and strive to reach their goals, come what may.
The plant in Ankleshwar, Gujarat measures approx. 50,000 sq. feet and in the past couple of years they have almost doubled the space. Foreseeing the business potential, Chemiplant has invested into expansion every ten years. It has also invested largely in machinery such as cutting, welding, rolling, shaping, machining, milling, etc. It has installed vertical lathe machines, which can do a 3200 mm diametersized job. The company has four working bays with two overhead cranes for each bay with a capacity of 10 to 25 tons.
This helps to take jobs in large volumes. It has the capacity to handle a 1 lakh liter/100 kiloliter vessel with this kind of infrastructure. At present it has executed up to 50k liter vessels and expects orders for 1 lakh liter vessels soon. It can produce twenty equipment at a time within a month ranging from 1000 liters to 40000 liters i.e. 240 equipment in a year.
Mr Kalra perceives automation to be the future as it can give very fast and accurate production with very minor chances of variation. Even in India in the near future, most of the factories would be taken over by automation. Chemiplant intends to start involving automation in a few processes of production and human intervention would certainly be required. At design level, the company has invested in 3D software, which dissolves a lot of errors in the manufacturing process. Pilferage of drawings/ designs is possible so they have screens in factories where the drawings are displayed and whoever wants to access the design can go to the screen and see it.
Transact is another software which they use to monitor purchases and stock maintenance. Technological and digital development is transforming day after day and the company is open to investing in it. The team is also working on the long term concept of “Fit & Forget Products” that aims at making machines work without a problem for a minimum of twenty years.
To achieve his vision for Chemiplant Mr Kalra believes in taking small steps, understanding where the competitors are active, investing in databases, digitalisation, focus on digital marketing, periodic training and motivation to team, having an exports manager and putting systems in place in their factory so that they are consistently able to improve on the quality of the offerings for the customers.
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