In an interview with TheSMEIndia.com, Hemant Sapra, Co-Founder and President, Global Marketing at KARAM Industries, discusses how the company has achieved quality control through backward integration. The organization transitioned from a “chalta hain attitude” to severe quality training and worker nurturing. Currently, the company has production plants in Lucknow and Sitarganj, with over 2000 employees, 1000 dealers, and over 200 sales representatives.
In 2008-09, the company was functioning as an OEM for the larger conglomerates before deciding to go independent. The company currently sells 50% of its products to all six continents, including 100 nations such as France, the United States, Brazil, South Africa, Australia, and Dubai. He also claims that the perception of Indian products, particularly in the field of safety, is different in Europe and the United States, and that the end user will not touch an Indian brand, and that the company, through its quality, has been able to change the perception by beginning with a European brand in the field of safety and is now replicating the same in the United States. The company intends to start manufacturing, but are constrained due to high import duties.
The company had excellent government backing, and during the early pandemic period, they were granted clearance in minutes, right from the start of procuring raw materials across the country. The manufacture of Eyewear as a safety device began in March with a manufacturing capability of 2000 units per day, but the government desired roughly 4000 in a day, which was attainable within a week due to backward integration. They later added protective shields as well.
He further stressed how, while WHO first backed the use of N95 masks to protect US manufacturers, he now strongly promotes the use of ISI designated FFP2 or BIS masks in India because the filters used and required varied by country. Despite the fact that they have purchased additional equipment to protect people from the second wave, he stated that the devices will take time to produce. Finally, he concluded the discussion by urging that the Indian government begin pushing ISI labelled FFP2.