Uniline has entered its 20th year. Over these two decades, the company has stayed ahead of its competitors by coming up with innovative and technologically sound products at the right time, claims its managing director, R K Bansal. Bansal has delivered steady growth for the company while expanding Uniline’s reach. Speaking to Srabani Sen of Electronics Bazaar, Bansal edifies on the company’s achievements, strategies and its future plans
Q: Uniline has been in the power electronics segment for the last two decades. What is the company’s USPs?
There are several factors for our success—using advance technology suitable for Indian condition; staying ahead of our competitors with the right product at the right time; competitive prices; customisation; and dependable after sales support. When we entered the UPS market, there were few players who were selling UPS systems. Those UPS systems could not be run on generators and were also very low in backup time. During the last 20 years, our focus had been to design solutions as per the Indian power condition taking into account the problems like power fluctuation and extreme environmental condition and long power cuts.
From the beginning, we realised that to be in the electronics field, we have to be always ahead with better technology than our competitors. The rate of change of technology is very fast in the electronics industry. But we were able to introduce the right products at the right time. For example, while most of the players were manufacturing MOSFET based systems, we introduced IGBT based UPS system. Similarly, we are now supplying touch screen operated three phase UPS systems while most of the local players are still at the designing stage. Further, we always provide excellent after sales support and customise as per customer requirements.
Q What customisation do you do and how? What is the minimum deal size of customisation?
In this competitive market, where every company is vying for a greater share, many are indulging in customised solutions, which are not only profitable but also a good brand building strategy. We are capable of customising any product as per customer requirements by changing the technology (if required) and making the product feature-packed and innovative. But since customisation is quite an expensive affair, we take up projects with minimum deal size of Rs 4 lakh.
Q How much do you invest in the R&D team? How many people do you have in this team?
We give a lot of attention to our R&D team. It is quite strong and comes up with innovative products now and then. We believe that to face the stiff competition in the market we have to have technologically sound products. The team consists of 12 members, who are highly skilled. Annually, we invest about Rs 60 lakh in the R&D team.
Q What are the main products you have? What are the new products you came out with in the last one year?
Our product range consists of IGBT based single phase/three phase UPS system, touch screen three phase UPS system, parallel redundant type UPS, hot standby type UPS, etc. We are coming up with touch screen three phase UPS system. We will soon launch solar power UPS systems, higher rating UPS systems (that is, more than 200 kVA), sinewave inverter system upto 300 kVA, etc. We are also coming up with a new range of 300kVA, 400kVA, 500kVA and 800kVA.
Q What strategy do you apply for reaching out to customers?
We are popular for our after sales services. Our sales and service network is spread all over India. We take care in selecting our channel partners and training them as through them we do business worth Rs 5 crore. We also provide after sales support through our own service centres/franchises spread across India.
Q What other strategies do you follow to be ahead of your competitors?
After capturing a considerable market share, we have now realised the importance of brand building and have harped upon an aggressive promotion strategy. Our target audiences are the IT sector. Thereafter our target audiences are printing industry, digital photo studios, telecom industry, etc.
Q What are Uniline’s future plans?
We are planning to enter the domestic inverter industry to supply inverter systems for ACs, offices, large farm houses, etc for their power conditioning needs as an alternative to generators. We are also planning to enter into solar power field. We are currently working on higher rating UPS systems, that is, from 200 kVA to 500 kVA IGBT based UPS systems.
Uniline was founded in 1989 with an initial capital of Rs 19,500. Started as a trading company to supply UPS systems, it gradually created its own brand name ‘Uniline’ and started production in 1996. Now it has two modern plants in Delhi and Parwanoo (HP), which manufacture UPS systems like single phase, three phase, parallel redundant UPS systems, etc.