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Hari Prakash M, CEO, IPOL Lubricants

Image: IPOL Lubricants
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Coolants & Lubricant “Evolving towards sustainable alternatives”

May 16, 2017

Hari Prakash M, CEO, IPOL Lubricants, in this interview with Suchi Adhikari, discusses the emerging trends in the industrial and automotive lubricants segment and the growing awareness and demand for sustainable products in this area. Excerpts…

Tell us about your company’s expertise & new launches.

IPOL Lubricants is acknowledged for its specialisation in formulating and manufacturing industrial and automotive lubricants, process oils, greases and other specialties for the last four decades in India as well as in the global market. Our company has kick-started the initiative of next-gen product series, which include semi-synthetic cutting fluids, which was showcased during IMTEX 2017. We also introduced ester-based synthetic neat cutting oils, which reduces tool consumption and improves productivity in gear manufacturing.

What is the impact of the ‘Make in India’ initiative on the Indian manufacturing sector? How is your company strategising its plan for manufacturing activities in India?

The ‘Make in India’ initiative is a great initiative by the government. In support of this initiative, our company has formed a licensing arrangement with the Spanish oil major, Repsol, to manufacture and market its branded lubricants in India in our existing plants. Repsol lubricants are formulated in the state-of-the-art global R&D centre in Spain, which caters to the newly emerging premium and top-end segments. These premium products are produced by GP Petroleums in its own manufacturing plant in Vasai, which is ISO 9001; 14001 and OHSAS 18001 compliant. The plant is equipped with modern testing facilities where the process and stringent quality standards have been certified by Repsol S A, Spain, which further acknowledges the capability of manufacturing facility in India to produce world-class products.

Brief us on the major trends in your industry sector in the upcoming years, in terms of technology development, market requirements, product lifecycle, collaborative manufacturing, etc.

Today, users are shifting from conventional mineral oil-based soluble oil to semi-synthetic coolants. Driving factors are longer sump life, which is related to lower cost of disposal of used emulsion. Our company offers extended sump life through ‘Advanced Coolant Protection Technology’, alongwith semi-synthetic products. The trend of water extendable fluids is also shifting towards semi-synthetic products. We offer the ‘Enhanco’ series of semi-synthetic products, which are equipped to address these needs. With significant awareness towards environmental hazards, the technology trend is to offer products free from chlorine without affecting performance parameters. Our R&D has come up with a new series of neat oil products called Multikut HSM, which is free from chlorine. Looking towards the market trend of high performance fluid for metal cutting, R&D at IPOL is evolving towards developing synthetic oils, which would be a sustainable alternative to the conventional solvent neutral base stock used in this segment.

How do you plan to align your company’s Vision 2020 strategy with these trends?

High demand from automotive, industrial machinery and construction are expected to drive industry growth over the forecast period. Our company’s vision is to become the preferred partners for providing world-class lubricants and services, by applying technology and innovative business solutions. We plan to achieve this by being at the top of our customer’s mind. This would be made possible by offering the best formulated, customised, quality products which optimise the total cost of operations.

How do you plan to expand your company’s market presence in India? What are the future plans for the Indian market?

In the future, our company will see continued focus in offering ‘Fit for purpose’ products to keep the total cost of operations optimised and also the ‘Enhanco’ series of new range products, to meet the demands of metal working fluids and high performance lubricants. We will also expand our reach to cater to lubricant requirements in cement, mining, textile, power & infrastructure industries in the coming years.

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