APL Apollo Tubes invests ₹300-crore in new technology for making steel pipes

V Sajeev Kumar Kochi | Updated on January 15, 2018 Published on April 17, 2017

Bringing in revolutionary changes in galvanised steel pipes production, APL Apollo Tubes has lined up investments close to ₹300 crore for Direct Forming Technology (DFT), a value addition in steel pipes manufacturing.

Globally, DFT is the latest technology and is preferred in advanced economies such as the US, Europe, South Korea and Japan.

Being introduced in India for the first time, this will enable the company to become a market leader, said Sharad Mahendra, Director (Sales & Marketing).

DFT enables forming universal hollow shapes of pipes to fit customer requirements. The technology will play a major role, given the fast growing construction and infrastructure sectors in the country, he said. Of the total investment earmarked for technological upgradation, he said ₹200 crore has been invested in FY-17 and the remaining will be in FY-18.

With the introduction of DFT and other new line of addition of present technology, the total capacity of APL Apollo Tubes will increase from 1.3 million tonnes to two million tonnes and will take the company among the top three steel pipes and tubes manufacturers in the world.

Mahendra spoke to BusinessLine at the sidelines of the national launch of Apollo Coastguard, a corrosion-proof galvanised steel pipes meant for coastal regions.

Online galvanising

Besides, the company is also at advanced stage of introducing another new technology “online galvanising” which will cater to specific requirements in the coastal markets and fast growing green house segment. “We are in discussion with a Japanese company for the introduction of this technology in India which is expected to enhance the life of galvanised pipes in the coastal regions,” he said.

Post demonetisation, he said the consumption of galvanised steel pipes has started picking up, registering an all-time high sales of more than one lakh tonnes in March against the average sale of 75,000 tonnes.

The growth has been primarily driven by the surging demand from consuming sectors such as agri, automobile, construction and so on.

On the financial performance, he said APL Apollo Tubes has garnered a turnover of ₹4300 crore in 2015-16.

Despite the muted demand in 2016-17, the company is expecting a reasonable growth in FY-17. However, it foresees a double- digit growth in FY-18, thanks to the government's major project announcements on infrastructure such as metro rails, airports etc, he added.

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Published on April 17, 2017
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