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Wednesday, Mar 20, 2002

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Cooper Bussman bullish on exports

M. Ramesh

Workers at the fuse assembly line at the Cooper Bussmann factory in Pondicherry.


COOPER Bussman India Pvt Ltd, which produces a variety of fuses, expects its export business to grow to Rs 24 crore in the calendar year 2002, from Rs 18 crore last year.

This will be possible mainly because of increasing confidence of the main overseas buyer, Cooper Bussman of the UK, in the quality of the products from India.

Alongside, the company expects its domestic turnover to double to Rs 6 crore this year, thanks to the thrust provided by an ad-blitz launched in January.

For many years, Cooper Bussman, part of Cooper Industries of the US, had only a liaison office in Bangalore.

In January 2000, the company acquired the fuse division of S&S Power Switchgear. This got the company the manufacturing facility it has today in Pondicherry.

After an infusion of Rs 6 crore in the upgradation and expansion of the facility, the plant is capable of producing 300,000 per month of high-quality fuses.

The process of expansion continues into this year; the company intends to spend at least Rs 1 crore more.

The company launched the `Bussman' brand in January at the Elecrama 2002 exhibition at Mumbai. The brand will replace the S&S brand the company acquired.

Now, with the upgraded production facility established and the products launched, Cooper Bussman intends to double the number of its dealers to 100 before July.

The higher production and larger distribution network the company targets would help it reach the target of Rs 6-crore sales in the Indian market.

The company's Managing Director, Mr A.N. Chandramouli, told Business Line here on Monday that the company achieved a 20 per cent jump in order bookings in the January-March quarter of this year, as compared to the same quarter last year.

The warehouse that the company has set up in Pondicherry, from where it sells imported fuses in rupee terms, also helped sales, he said.

He said that a rapid indigenisation programme was on.

In the current (calendar) year, the company's local vendors would get a business worth Rs 15 crore, thanks to the export-led growth in Cooper Bussman's turnover.

The company expected to reach a turnover of Rs 80 crore in five years, two-thirds of which would come from exports, Mr Chandramouli said.

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