“Advantech has been investing in India for the last two decades, and we will continue to do so. Today, we are committing for our next phase of growth in the country,” Mark Yang, AVP of Advantech Intercon and General Manager of Advantech India, told Electronics For You during an exclusive conversation with Mr Yang and Mr Wesley, Board Member of Advantech, and HR Director which took place on the occasion of Advantech unveiling its new office in Bangalore. While it offers solutions and products for industrial automation, transportation, and security & surveillance sectors, the company plans to foray into defence, space technology, medical, and electric vehicles. Here are some super exciting excerpts from the interaction.
Q. Over the past three years, what growth have you experienced in India, and how do you plan to manage it going forward?
A. Advantech India has seen an impressive average growth of 19.5% over the last three years, with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 32.3%. India is a promising market, especially in the AI and IoT verticals.
Additionally, our growth during the last seven years has been substantial. India has a lot of potential as a market for us. We are glad that our products and solutions are becoming a part of India’s growth story.
Q. Do you see any change in this momentum during the next five fiscals?
A: The momentum will not just continue but will accelerate further. We aim to double our revenues from India within the next five years. Besides the revenue growth we expect from India, we will leverage local talent to create AI and IoT solutions for the global market.
Advantech’s domestic customers are very varied, and there will be no change. While our primary customer verticals are industrial automation, transportation, and security & surveillance, we also expect growth from some new sectors.
Q. What other sectors do you plan to foray into?
A. While we expect growth in the current sectors, especially with the introduction of the “Make in India” initiative, we are also looking at sectors like defence, space technology, and medical. We saw some Indian medical equipment companies use Advantech controllers, and India has great potential in the medical sector business. Moreover, with the rise of Electric Vehicles (EVs) in India, we’re gearing up to support this emerging market.
Apart from these, we will keep looking for sectors that we can help innovate and Make In India for the world. It is a great time to be here. We love the type of innovation happening here!
Q. Does this mean more investment in India from Advantech to support this expansion?
A. Yes, we’re committing more investment on capital for talent acquisition, infrastructure, and manufacturing. We believe the Indian market offers significant business potential, leading to more investment in India. Advantech has been investing in India for over two decades and will continue.
Further, we are considering building a software team in India due to its rich IT talent pool. This team will also be deployed to support our under-development global E-commerce team.
Q. Are you working on any new marketing strategies?
A. We’re ramping up our presence on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram to engage more professionals actively and spread our brand message. We have created fan pages to tell the public about the recruiting events, branding events and product information to attract more professionals towards Advantech.
Q. Do you have plans to expand partnerships or system integrations in India? What qualities do you expect in partners?
A. We’re keen on expanding partnerships in AI and IoT sectors in India. We expect our partners to be technologically advanced and adaptable to ensure mutual success.
Q. How do you manage potential conflicts between target customers and partners?
A. We ensure our partners have distinct areas of expertise so that they can add their value as per their experience, technology and support. This differentiation strategy minimises any potential overlap or conflict.
Advantech is also expanding its product portfolio for the verticals I mentioned before. For the same, we are recruiting new partners who can add more value to our products. So, old partners have their expertise, and the new partners will have their expertise to offer.
Q. Are there research, design, and manufacturing plans in India?
A. Yes, it’s our priority, so we are expanding the office in Bangalore. While we currently assemble in India with R&D based in Taiwan, we’re considering shifting certain R&D functions to India, particularly for products tailored to the Indian market. Our goal is to deepen our roots in India, especially in the AI and IoT sectors, creating more alliances on the way.
Q. Why choose Bangalore as Advantech’s Indian headquarters? Are there expansion plans for other Indian cities?
A. While Bangalore offers logistical advantages. It is also the best place to headquarters the IT and software teams. Bangalore is also an ideal city for housing a small part of our global e-commerce team. The IT and software talent here is exceptional. I understand that the workforce in Bangalore is a mix of all parts of India, which is an essential ingredient to ensure success for us and our partners.
That said, we are also investing in Pune for IT services. We also see potential in cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Chennai and are planning to set up sales and technical support offices there.
Q. Are there collaborations with academic institutions for R&D?
A. Collaborations with Academia are a must to innovate. In figures, we have partnered with over 30+ universities for internships. Additionally, we’re discussing setting up an IoT lab at Christ University in Bangalore to facilitate IoT courses. We plan to implement this model in more universities in India.
Q. Is talent acquisition becoming more challenging, and how are you addressing this?
A. Talent acquisition is a global challenge. We’re diversifying our recruitment channels, strengthening our internship programs, collaborating academically, and inviting potential talents to our campus in Taipei for an immersive experience. In Taipei, we have a demo room and other facilities where they can experience how Advantech works and consider joining Advantech in the future.
Q. What are Advantech’s core values that attract talent?
A. Our primary talent acquisition principle is “right people on board.” We proactively seek out high-potential individuals and align them with roles that suit their strengths.
There have been instances where we have onboarded professionals without job openings. It is all about the right mindset for us.