Founded in 1960, Atlas Copco India is a manufacturer of equipment used for construction. A part of Atlas Copco Group that was established in 1873, in Stockholm, Sweden, the company provides compressed air and vacuum equipment, industrial power tools and construction and mining equipments. Atlas Copco has been providing its products and services in Nepal through its partner Nepal Construction and Engineering Corporation (NCEC) Pvt Ltd.
Tony Van Herbruggen, general manager of Atlas Copco India was recently in Nepal to attend a customer meet event. In an interview with New Business Age, Herbruggen talked about the company’s presence in Nepal, its plans here, among other topics. Excerpts:
What brings you to Nepal?
I am here primarily to have a better understanding about our customers’ needs, market opportunities, set up distributors and to discuss what more we can do in the future for the benefit of the customers and our business in Nepal.
Atlas Copco’s presence in Nepal through its local partner Nepal Construction and Engineering Corporation (NCEC) has spanned several decades. How has the journey been so far?
As I have joined the company recently, I can only speak of the last five to six months. But I am sure that it must have been a good journey because they have been partners for almost six decades. After joining the company, I came to know that NCEC has always been dedicated to developing Atlas Copco business in Nepal. So we are happy with their performance and of course, we can do more in the future.
What products and services has Atlas Copco been providing through NCEC? What are the unique selling propositions (USPs) of your company’s products?
The majority of our products are power equipment in customer segments in construction, mining, hydropower, etc. We provide all kinds of equipment that are needed for these kinds of projects, road construction, and tunnels, etc. We also provide portable compressors, nomadic breakers and rock breakers and we are also looking into more actively introducing pumps, generators and products that we believe have a future in Nepal. We have a lot of innovative products and we want to introduce such products in Nepal as soon as possible.
We are also looking to be the best after sales service provider; we want to make sure that our customers get very good back up service and spare parts are easily available. Our Nepali partner has been already doing very well in this respect. We are happy with the current coverage but we can work together to perform even better in the future. Though being a market leader in Nepal, we still have a lot of things to do here.
So how is your company looking to expand its presence here?
We can do more by introducing new innovative products in the market. But also I understand that a lot of construction projects have been kept on hold this year. We hope that the construction of the projects will start soon because there is still a lot of opportunity in road construction and other works in infrastructural development in Nepal.
For us as a company, our big focus is being innovative in products that will benefit our customers. Also, we want to make our equipment environment-friendly and have lower fuel consumption. Another focus for us will be to work with our local partner to have better territory coverage across the country.
Is there anything the government needs to do so that a company like Atlas Copco can provide better products and services here?
The government of Nepal has prioritised road construction, tunneling and so on. But if it doesn’t release funds for infrastructural development, then it is difficult for the construction companies to buy equipment and expedite the work they have undertaken.