07/12/2022
Creating New Pathways for Growth
"There is a tide in the affairs of men, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune."
– William Shakespeare
By Raghavendra Mirji
Godrej E&E
We have integrated various processes with advanced IT systems and mobile applications, which are based on TOC principles.

Indeed, there has been a tide in the affairs of Godrej E&E business, which the Team E&E has taken at the flood to create a fortune for the business as it looks to the future. The business environment is so uncertain, ambiguous and dynamic that what worked until yesterday may not work tomorrow. There is simply no comfort zone. Businesses must learn to thrive in fluid conditions by constantly adapting and changing at speeds not yet attempted. Godrej E&E has now embarked upon a journey to create its new fortune! Despite the prolonged pandemic, intense competition and other business challenges, E&E business has secured orders in the first five months of FY-’23, which surpasses the plan for the period and marks a growth of 175%+ over the same period, FY –’22. A stupendous achievement. This phoenix like rise from the ashes has not been easy but is an outcome of the team’s diligent and intense efforts. Customer centricity, smartly crafted strategy and strong execution have contributed to this achievement. Undoubtedly, effective leadership at all levels has played a vital role. A rise in the securing of orders of the magnitude stated above is always an outcome of many small and big initiatives executed well. Let me share some of the major initiatives that have contributed towards the growth.

Portfolio Revamping – The right focus where we want to play:

Looking at the vulnerabilities of the past, the gravity of the present and our envisioned future, we adopted the strategy of ‘shrink to grow’. The adoption of this strategy enabled us to focus on growing “Core” business across our LOBs. This means, shedding some business segments from our portfolio, even though these might have contributed significantly to the topline in the past. These decisions were not easy decision to take, but to create our own future, we had no other options. We took calls to shed the Power Distribution segment (In PIRE LOB), Residential segment in MEP and other segments like Air Compressors and Industrial Automation. We have chosen to play in the segments of Extra High Voltage Transmission & Substations, Commercial & Data Centers in MEP, Busduct business, Green Consulting and Air controller business. As we foray into the future, these segments/LOBs/spaces will define E&E’s core business to be focused upon for profitable growth in the future. The above reshaping of our portfolio of businesses was carried out after systematic mapping of our competitors and customers. Our choices were made to build differentiation. All key strategies were vetted thoroughly and due diligence was done that covered market strategy, business processes, management of risks and the like. As a result, our Power Infrastructure and Renewable Energy ( PIRE) and MEP LOBs are most preferred amongst the EPC players, EHV substation space, Commercial and Data centre space, where our presence was negligible 5 years ago. We have also grown significantly our business in other two LOBs, namely, Busduct and Green Consulting and Energy Management (GCEM).

Adapting to the emerging technologies / Segment & Collaborative Partnership with key players:

We were quick to adapt & envisage in new emerging technology like Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS), High Voltage underground cabling, Digital Sub-stations and others in Transmission segment & started building partnerships to qualify for the upcoming tenders. Apart from tapping key OEM players in India, we entered into collaborative agreements with global leaders from Europe, China and Korea. We have established exclusive tie ups and multilevel connections- right up to the senior most levels of our partners by visiting their facilities and inviting them to our premises. This has helped us forge sound relationships that assures us of complete support for winning key orders. We have completed major GIS projects of 220kV & 400kV in West Bengal, Gujarat, Bihar & Northeast states and have received new orders for Maharashtra - Mumbai, Assam and Delhi. In Q1 of FY23, PIRE team has succeeded in winning a single largest order of Rs 375 Cr in EHV segment having 400 kV GIS substation and underground cabling. Our strategic partnership with M/s KEI for EHV cables has helped us win this project. Further, focusing on emerging segments like Airport infrastructure & Data centres, our MEP team has bagged a “Bangalore International Airport” project worth Rs 107 Cr with a project timeline of six months. The scope of the project comprises a Multi-Model Transportation Hub (MMTH) between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 of the BLR airport which will cover an area of 900,000 sq ft with 200 kms of cables and 75 kms of piping.

The MEP team has successfully bagged a data centre project of 12 MW capacity worth Rs 92 Cr, a largest order so far, in datacenter segment, with a timeline of only 7 months.

Building Capabilities – Project Management and New Product Development:

As we scale out business, it is essential that we improve out project management capabilities, which we are in the process of doing, by incorporating learnings from client feedback as well as learnings from projects executed earlier. Sophistication in project management helps us win confidence in our clients. We have added new capabilities in design and engineering of advanced GIS substations, structures, and HVACs. Estimation, costing and engineering capabilities for new segments like railways and underground cabling are also being developed. A customer centric approach and strong execution capabilities have enabled PIRE and MEP to win Rs. 600 crores worth of orders in the last 5 months. Our Busduct business has been facing severe competition for last few years. As a result, our order booking was impacted adversely last year. To turn around the situation, we carried out a thorough lost order analysis which revealed that our costs were out of line on account of existing design and other factors. We performed a systematic ‘Tear down’ analysis of competitors' products and identified the gaps that needed to be addressed. We initiated new product development activity and rolled out a new product range with reduction in material cost of around 15%. This new product range of ‘Sandwich type’ Busducts began giving us an edge in the market, as a result of which our Busduct business has secured orders worth of Rs. 83 crores in the first 5 months of FY –’23 as against Rs. 77 crores in entire FY -’22!

Key Account Management:

For all B2B businesses, KAM is the key especially where large private or government sector projects are involved. KAM plays a critical role in such projects. At E&E, we systematically mapped the KAM Process across all the levels, both at the clients’ side as well as at ours. We have defined the engagement schedule at every level. At project sites, regular meetings, planned and unplanned, are held for continual reviews and solving problems. Constructive decisions are held to improve execution at sites. Quick responses to the queries from the site are insisted upon from the business team. Faster responses result in improved confidence of clients in our capabilities. This virtuous cycle helps us build strong connects with the senior levels on the client side, to secure the help required as well as win future business - new or repeat. To give an example, our PIRE team could establish strong connects with one of our major clients through the systematic deployment of KAM process and bag four large projects worth Rs. 800 crores. This was despite the fact we were not L1 during the initial reverse auction process, but we could get the orders based on the credibility built over a time, by the team.

The KAM process has also worked effectively for our MEP LOB to win orders from datacenter projects, despite the stiff competition from established national level players like Voltas and Bluestar.

Our project management and KAM capabilities have helped us make repeat orders a norm as against infrequent occurrences. Our Green Consultancy & Energy Management (GCEM) vertical is a niche business.

A systematic deployment of KAM process here has helped us revitalize the business, in terms of generating higher level of enquiries.

Also, the strategy of doing pilot projects with clients to give them confidence and then taking the success of pilot projects to all their other units has given us good results for both, GCEM and Air Controller Products. Also, it has given us repeat business from leading clients to the extent of 15% growth over the last year. In our Air Controller Business, the strategy of giving budgetary quotations has enabled us to enter the fray earlier for expanding the customer base and generating more enquiries to the extent of 35% year on year. The KAM process has proved its mettle in our Busduct business. At one of our key customers in the data center segment, there was an issue of supplying busducts of unsatisfactory quality which had led to many challenges of commissioning the busducts. This had led to our busduct business being not considered for their future projects. However, this tough situation was reversed through the deployment of our KAM process and supplying newly designed busducts. As a result, the customer gave us further orders worth Rs. 37 crores in the Q1 FY-’23. This success has strengthened our belief in our KAM process and the constructive role it can play in the management of clients.

To Wrap Up

At E&E, we believe that continuous learning is the best way to improve our performance. The key initiatives mentioned above have helped us secure new orders worth Rs 700+ crores in the first five months of FY-’23 and build an order bank of Rs. 2000 crores. As a result, our team is confident of surpassing the revenue plan of FY- ’23. Team E&E has built a strong foundation which will enable the business to take the tide at the flood and create a future for the business.

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