How Taparia Tools expanding in India with a strong product line
Taparia Tools Ltd (TTL) is a 53-year old manufacturer and exporter of precision make quality hand tools. The Mumbai-based company started manufacturing hand tools in technical collaboration with a Swedish company. Its senior management had gone to Sweden and took practical training in their plant for more than a year.
Since 1969, Taparia Tools has been consistently producing all the hand tools in India with the exact technology of its collaborators. In an exclusive interview with Bizz Buzz, DP Taparia, Managing Director of TTL, shares his views about the hand tool market in India amid stiff competition from domestic unorganised players and cheaper goods from Chinese counterparts.
Could you let us know about the branded hand tools from TTL?
Though the human hand performs many remarkable activities, there comes a limitation. For suppose, where some nut or a screw has to be tightened, the human hand alone will not be able to do it and there comes the role of a hand tool. So, we believe that a hand tool is an extension of a human hand.
TTL is an ISO-9001 accredited company, and it is a leading wholesale distributor, trader and supplier of all kinds of hand tools, cutting tools, power tools, adhesive, abrasive, welding accessories, bolts, nuts & washers, fasteners, foundation bolts, U bolts, anchor fastener, imported self drilling screws and all kinds of industrial needs.
We have a wide product range including adjustable spanners, pliers, screw drivers, bits & sets, tool sets, sockets, socket accessories, torque wrench, hammers, clamps, wheel spanners, chisels, punches, cutters, hacksaw blades, allen keys & sets, gear pullers, tools trolley, cutting blades and non-sparking tools.
What is the USP of the company that diﬀerentiates from other competitors?
Maintaining a better quality is the unique selling proposition (USP) of our company. The quality of our tools is superior and is comparable to any standard. We have always been in the forefront of taking our products to the tier-2 cities as we acknowledge the contribution of these cities in building the nation. We have deployed every known right method to market our tools.
From the inception of the company, we have laid high emphasis on the quality of our products. Our quality control department monitors the quality of each product at different stages of the production. Our tools meet, and in some cases, exceed the US Federal specifications of hardness and torque value besides meeting Indian, British and German standards.
Our tools are forged with high grade steel, and heat treated to give long trouble-free service. Their quality is well received everywhere and appreciated by all. The company presently has a large number of distributors, distributing our products all over India. Besides being a brand leader here, we are also exporting our tools to all major developed countries.
The company has fully absorbed the production technology of its Swedish collaborator. It has a design and development department with latest computer-aided design (CAD) facilities where all the designs of products and modifications are made. Our tools are guaranteed against manufacturing and raw material defects and are replaced free of cost with no questions asked.
Do you see any threat by the cheap tools being imported from China?
China is a major supplier of cheap hand tools and our industry has been facing serious competition in the domestic as well as export markets. However, Indian consumers are becoming conscious about the menace of poor-quality hand tools imported from China. As those products are not up to the mark, we have repeated customers.
How about the competition from unorganised players within India?
Initially, we had formidable competition, mainly from tool manufacturers in the unorganised sector and other Indian companies. TTL today commands almost 70-75 per cent market share in the organised sector. Marketing a high quality hand tool is quite a task in this market. We are ahead of all other manufacturers in terms of quality and we are trying to maintain it.
Seeing the recent trend of quality conscious consumers opting for sophisticated but reasonably priced 'do-it-yourself' tools, the company has launched a variety of home tool kits for women, particularly housewives & kids, and utility sets for vehicles. We see a huge market for these products in an evolving market.
Are you planning to increase the distributor network in Telugu States?
TTL has a strong presence all over India, but we are having a special focus on two Telugu States. We have 800 distributors across the country. Among them, four are in Telangana and seven in Andhra Pradesh. Hyderabad-based Raman Trading Company is one of the leading distributors in the country, doing a business of Rs 25-30 crore per annum.
The company is planning to further strengthen the distributor network in AP over the coming days. It has been manufacturing more than 3,000 tools, and it is continually expanding with many new products. We are showcasing our latest product range in shopping malls and utility home product stores that are multiplying across the country.
We have recently participated in the IndoMach Industrial & Machinery Expo 2022 at Hyderabad along with Raman Trading Company as partner, to display our new and old product ranges. The main idea of taking part in the exhibition is to find new distributors and to expand our business. We are focusing on adding our distribution network to increase the sales.
Where do you have the manufacturing facilities? Are you going to enhance the production capacity?
The company has a well laid out fully equipped factory located at Nashik, Maharashtra and another expanded unit at Goa. The manufacturing facilities required for production of hand tools include modern forge shop, machine shop, heat treatment, polishing, and nickel chrome plating. The quality, features, look and packing of the tools are regularly improved.
Hand tools manufacturing is complicated involving high technology and labour intensive production processes. Out of the total 1,200 workforce, the number of people engaged in direct production is 1,000. The remaining are in administrative and management. The research and development department is manned by mechanical engineers and metallurgists.
The company has proposed to set up a manufacturing facility at Vapi, in the State of Gujarat. The construction of the project has been started recently, but it was stalled due to some local issues.
Could you reveal the financials of the company?
The BSE-listed hand tool manufacturing company has reported a turnover of Rs 650 crore during last financial year, and it is planning to achieve around Rs 720 crore in this fiscal.
What are the awards and accolades received by the company?
TTL has received award for export excellence since 1974-75 onwards in the following years 1977-78, 1978-79, 1979-80, 1990-91, 1991-92, 1993-94, 1994-95, 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-2000, 2000-01, 2002-03, 2003-04, 2005-06 and 2006-07. The company has been continuously participating in international fairs and events in Europe and the US.