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Construction : Perspective | May 2016 | Source : CW-India

The market is moving towards integrated MEP services

- R Aravindan, Vice President (Electro-Mechanical Projects Group), Blue Star Ltd
High efficiency centrifugal chillers, VRFs and inverter ACs are gaining ground as the world is becoming more sensitive to energy-efficiency and consequent carbon emissions.

R Aravindan, Executive Vice President (Electro-Mechanical Projects Group), Blue Star Ltd, shares more on the HVAC market and recent technologies.

What is driving the HVAC market in India?
The HVAC market encompassing varied applications from residence to commercial and industrial space is showing definite signs of pick up and is expected to move into the next cycle of growth trajectory in the near future. The government's infra push is visible in metros, airports, etc, apart from manufacturing and healthcare, wherein we expect to witness demand surge through investments by both the public and private sectors. Also, an early onset of summer with rise in temperatures has pushed up demand for unitary products. A combination of all these would take this industry to a minimum 20 per cent CAGR in the coming years as we are ready ourselves for a healthy growth from most segments.

What are the upcoming opportunities for HVAC segment, considering impetus on Make in India?
Huge investments are expected to flow in from both Indian corporates and multinationals for either augmentation of existing manufacturing facilities or a new outfit for various products viz, electronics, automobiles and ancillaries, FMCG, food processing, etc. HVAC has become an integral part of most applications for both machinery cooling and people comfort in all these industries. While a few projects have reached the finalisation stage, the growth in prospects is heartening and it does indicate that the industrial sector fueled by Make in India is going to be a major contributor to the new business in the HVAC market.

What are the new technologies introduced in the HVAC segment? Introduce us to your products.
With the world focusing intensely on energy-efficiency, renewable sources and conservation, new technologies are getting more traction in the HVAC industry. Energy-efficient systems with low power consumption are becoming the prime criterion in selecting various components in any integrated solutions, which include high COP chillers, inverter VRF units, VFD fitted mechanical systems, etc. Other important initiatives include harnessing STP water for water cooled systems with net zero building concepts and adoption of geothermal systems.

How do you view India emerging as a hub for HVAC?
India is already a hub as far as SAARC countries are concerned. With more technological developments and adoption, our local players shall match global standards, not only to satisfy domestic demands but to also increasingly target the international market. This is where another programme, Skill India, launched by the government, will go a long way in augmenting the skilled manpower as India offers talent pool to both the Middle East and other emerging markets. Advanced technology products manufactured in India and by skilled workforce would enable us to compete against global players better.

Anything else that you would like to share with us on the HVAC market?
The market is moving towards integrated MEP services; it began slowly but is now gathering pace as more and more decision makers and influencers are taking a holistic view of HVAC, electrical, plumbing, firefighting and other building services. Another paradigm change that is happening, is the increased focus on modernising execution practices at site, through deployment of professional project management techniques, modern tools and equipment, information technology and pre-fabricated finished works used at site.

This change fits well with the emerging market conditions like compressed timelines, reduced capital outlays and an overall shortage of skilled manpower, which is good on the whole, as it helps the industry move into the next phase of maturity. It is here, we find a place as a superior player, offering advanced technical solutions with an integrated approach to project management.

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