“We shall continue to be an alert, strong knowledge based marketing company, and supply the right product at the right time.”
C. C. Girotra,
Weldwell Speciality Pvt. Ltd.
WELDWELL SPECIALITY have earned a name as reputed and trusted supplier catering to special and specific needs of the welding industry. How has been the journey so far?
We started the business of marketing consumables three decades ago after having worked for more than a decade in Phillips India-welding division. We were focused on high alloy end consumables with large import content decided to continue on the same path. However, imported consumables were subjected to very high rate of customs duty due severe foreign exchange crunch in the year 1990.The market demand was for duty paid ready to deliver products. This challenge required strong product knowledge and contacts with reputed suppliers worldwide, which I fortunately possessed. Thus, our enterprise had a new developing market of high end consumables needed by refineries, thermal, fertilizer, chemical plants, and capital goods manufacturers.
We have received encouraging response and appreciation from industry since inception. We believe that every enquiry/request of customers is techno commercial in nature. We are able to explain why, when, how and where besides what of the products proposed. Thanks to our team’s strength of product knowledge. Thus, we have earned trust of our customers.
Could you brief us on your products range?
Currently, we have divided our range of products in three verticals viz. Welding Consumables, Welding machines and Thermal Spray powders.
The consumable range consists of full spectrum of arc welding consumables in C. Steel, S Steel, Low Alloy Grades, Al, Cu, Ni alloys and Ti. We supply almost all grades of highend consumables needed in welding and have good market share in low alloy creep resisting, S. Steel, Nickel, Copper and Titanium alloys. These products are procured from reputed foreign suppliers.
Our equipment range consists of transformers, rectifiers, MIG, TIG machines and also plasma cutting machines.
In the third vertical of Thermal Spray Products, we offer a wide range of Ni and Co based powders. We also supply metal powder needed for Additive Manufacturing process.
Which are your targeted sectors? How has been the response so far?
As we focus on high end consumables, hence we deal with users in petrochemical, refineries, Fertilizer, hydro and thermal power plants.
With regards to welding machines, we focus on energy saving, precision welding and automation products for high productivity. Thus, our customers are aerospace, aviation, auto mobile component manufacturers.
The thermal powders are supplied to automotive engine as well as process valve manufacturers, and is also used in there pair & maintenance applications.
Who are your major clients for all your products?
In line with our product profile, we serve large and medium size organizations that are quality conscious, have challenging jobs, and need high alloyed products. We have more than 200 active customers from all over India which includes RIL, L&T, Godrej, ISGEC, L&T Power, L&T MHPS Boiler, MHI, BHEL, Anup Engg, TEMA India, Thermax, Sulzer, Doosan, NTPC and VSSC to name a few. These buyers use our products for fabrication of capital goods—pressure vessels, heat exchangers, boilers, and chemical plants.
What are the types of projects, Weldwell has supplied its products to? Please elaborate.
Weldwell has been privileged to have participated in many projects as supplier of specialty consumables and equipment, which are as follows;
- As a marketer, we have brought reputed Kobe Steel from Japan to India and helped in making world class consumables needed in critical applications such as step cooling used in thick walled reactors. We also introduced non- purging wire and flux cored wire now available widely. We are proud to have introduced for the first time consumables for super critical boilers used by the Indo-Japanese joint venture L&T MHPS Boilers Ltd at Hazira.
- Brought world renowned Nickel Alloy major INCONEL brand too in the nooks and corners of India, where hundreds of projects are being executed.
- Latest is our participation of a tailor-made consumable used in the wet absorber (called FGD) system in NTPC owned plants. The Government has spent Rs 10,000/- Crores in this environment control project to reduce SO2 content in coal fired power plants.
- Our Ni welding wires are currently being used at MRPL refinery for a major repair work of coke oven battery.
- We supplied custom made high strength Al alloy wire to Brahmos Missile for one of their applications.
- We have supplied so far four number of special purpose computer controlled mechanized TIG machine used for fuel encapsulation application.
- Supplying consumable inserts made of carbon steel and stainless steels for nuclear components–namely end shield, control rod and primary and secondary piping systems. We are supplying these items since last 30years.
How has been the Indian market for Weldwell? Any expansion plans?
At Weldwell, we feel that the term expansion is Dynamic and Perpetual too in nature.
We do not have manufacturing facility as yet. We shall continue to be an alert, strong knowledge based marketing company, and supply the right product at the right time to be a strong link in the supply chain and increase productivity of manufacturers.
Do you also supply your products in the international market?
No, we cannot compete in international market since we ourselves are importing and selling here after paying customs duty. However, we do sell a small quantity, specific brands to customers in the middle east and S.E. Asia who need technical guidance and have trust in our recommendations.
What is your view on the current welding market scenario in India? Is it on par with the international market?
Weldwell is optimistic about the future welding developments taking place all over the world, and feels that the Indian Welding industry needs better coordinated efforts to catch up to the world standards. We have to reduce the gaps in our capability in the of design, metallurgy, welding process and nondestructive testing disciplines.
Hence, we feel that for a developing nation like India, welding industry too needs to keep pace with the advanced countries, by spending on large amount on R&D and skill development on priority.
What are your expectations from the Government for up gradation of the welding industry in India?
In our opinion, we, in welding field need to reduce gaps in our capability.
In the field of nuclear, defense and space program, our progress is impressive indeed. However, on deep analysis we find that we are dependent on imports for most of the high end metallurgical components, welding automation products and quality control and analytical instruments required for these applications.
The Government /industry ministry needs to intervene and appoint an apex body to have overview of status of capability in all segments of welding technology; an important contributor to manufacturing. There is scope for healthy interaction between Government and private sector. We need large resources in R&D and manpower in upgrading all four pillars -metallurgical, design, process and NDT capabilities.
Availability of skilled manpower is one of the major challenges, especially in the welding industry. Your say.
- Although my field is not related to manpower. I can, based on my knowledge say that the theory about shortage of welders is more hyped than actual status. No industry has stopped production due to shortage of welders.
- The problem of level of skill is serious. The ITIs impart theoretical knowledge but not sufficient knowledge of hands-on training. The other 50% intake of welders is from the non-formal route i.e. on the job training where they get to learn the skill but not theoretical knowledge.
Therefore, the solution lies in upgrading ITIs with the support of industry and also encourage private sector (non-formal route) in conducting proper welder training courses.
What are the major challenges you come across and how do you manage to cope up with the same?
Major challenge is recruitment of sales executives. We believe in employing technically qualified personnel so that we can recommend the right product, right procedure to weld and avoid any problem arising post welding. We invest lot of effort and time in this process.
The welding industry is largely encouraging the women in welding. Share your views.
The number of women welders in India may be a small in numbers unlike China and Brazil. With the awareness and equal opportunities all around women are beginning to occupy positions in design, marketing and shop floor. We expect similar trend in the field of sales and marketing.
What are your future plans?
Every successful journey has a pathway that is carefully laid in the past. We would like to maintain the lead as a strong marketing company.
We plan to focus on serving customers in growing high-tech sectors such as –
- Consumables and machines for high tech sectors
- Exotic grades such as Titanium and Zirconium alloys
- Focus on machines and accessories used in automation
- Metallic consumables for Additive manufacturing segment
We being in the marketing discipline, it is important to become an integral part of manufacturing activity connected with the capital goods as well as for repair /maintenance activity. Having strong product knowledge coupled with good services creates trust and confidence with customers.
For Indian industry, it is important to become competent at the international level. Government and private sector must jointly encourage R&D activities to bridge the gap. India with its large, young human capital and resource does have a bright future in this field of activity.
Mr. Chandra Bhushan Girotra after graduating in mechanical engineering during the year 1967, Joined the one-year course in nuclear sciences offered by the training school at BARC, Mumbai. This motivated him to specialize in welding discipline and accordingly completed a course in M.Sc., welding Technology at UK.
The work experience gained from the Nuclear Power Corporation and Philips India-welding division totaling twenty years catapulted him into setting up a small business during the year 1990 in the field of welding consumables and machines. This business after three decades has blossomed into a well-respected and reliable source of high end imported welding products, catering to a large number of customers spread across India.
Mr. Girotra also took active interest in professional activity by becoming a member of the IIW-India, an apex body set up for the advancement of science and technology of welding. Mr. Girotra occupied the prestigious position of this organisation as its president for the year 2008.He has earned several recognitions during these years and the latest to get added was the Jaeger Memorial Lecture Award’. The memorial lecture was delivered to an august audience at the International Welding Conference of the Institute, held at Mumbai during the month of February 2020.