A Firm : Making Agriculture Technologically Sound

Husqvarna Group, a global leading producer of outdoor power products for forest, park and garden care. The group is the European leader in garden watering products and a world leader in cutting equipment and diamond tools for the construction and stone industries. The products and solutions are sold in more than 100 countries under brands including Husqvarna, Gardena, McCulloch, Poulan Pro, Weed Eater, Flymo, Zenoah and Diamant Boart. Sustainability is high on its agenda with a strong focus on product emissions and energy consumption as well as ergonomics. Talking with the Managing Director & Country Manager of Husqvarna (India) Products Private Limited, Mr Rajesh Raghavan, Krishi Jagran explored the company and its prospects.

  • With the range of forest and gardening tools that you provide, Where does majority of your profits lies in?

We are at the start up stage having recently set-up our own entity in India. At the moment we are focusing on bringing in the ideal range of products suited for India across forestry, gardening and light agriculture and at affordable prices to the Indian consumers

  • What has been your global turnover in the last financial year? And how much business have you been doing in India lately ?

As Husqvarna group listed in Stockholm NASDAQ, globally our net sales has been 36 Billion SEK in 2016.  The Indian business has just begun and so far has been growing well in line with our expectations.

  • How much business do you reckon, you would be doing in India, in the next five years ?

We have ambitious growth targets for the business in India over the next five years as we expand our product range and dealer footprint.

  • In context with agriculture and farming in India, which Indian states have been giving you the most business and from which products?

We are going forward with a phase wise network expansion plan, starting with the southern and western parts of the country towards up north and east. So naturally our business is increasing in line with the network expansion across the geographies. As for products, we are continuously introducing newer models and are focusing on bringing to the market what is required.

  • As part of CS Responsibilities, Do you prefer to contribute in PM relief fund and Why? If not which activities does your company support the most and in which states of India?

We as a group have always been open and interested in Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives globally and are no different in India. We are currently evaluating potential activities where we can support and be actively involved in.

  • How does Indian Market differ from global markets when it comes at farm mechanization and tool usage?

In line with all other emerging markets, India is also fast growing in terms of farm mechanization and tool usage. Compared to the developed markets in the west, the emerging markets are upcoming in mechanization in certain applications. This is where Husqvarna’s expertise from the developed markets helps support growth in the emerging markets like India

  • In the global market which country draws the most revenue for you ? How is that country’s agriculture sector different from that of India’s ?

Most of our revenue comes from Europe and the Americas and much of it from forestry and gardening. Emerging economies contribute to our growth in agrarian sector.

  • What are the challenges that you face while working in this sector ?

Much of the challenge lies in mechanization in the agriculture sector. There is still a lot of scope for machine usage in agriculture in terms of soil preparation, seeding, soil preparation, inter-cultivation, pest and disease control, harvesting and post harvesting operations

  • When did you think you should expand your business to India, and How did that proceed? How helpful ( or unhelpful) has the government been with your expansion in India ?

Husqvarna has been evaluating the right time for entry into India ever since the 1990s through different channels and has set-up a wholly owned subsidiary in the recent past. The Indian subsidiary is fully operational since 2017 and we have not faced any problems with regards to expansion.

  • What are the innovative / new products that Husqvarna is planning to work upon and bring in the market ? How long shall we wait for the products to be introduced in Indian market ?

In every market Husqvarna aims at understanding the specific requirements and developing the suited products for those requirements. In India also we are actively studying the market and are constantly evaluating the need of new as well as improved products.

  • With the abundant farmer’s population in India, how affirmative have you been about new technology replacing manual labour at farms ?

We have seen in the past few months of our operations in India how positive the market has been in welcoming mechanization in forestry, gardening and agriculture. Although there is still room for improvement especially in the agriculture segment, we are optimistic that the market will embrace newer technologies at a faster pace.

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