Kindly take us through the journey of Rishabh Instruments in India so far.
Rishabh Instruments started its journey in 1987 with technology tie-up with BBC Metrawatt (Germany) for Analog Meters with a capacity of 400 instruments. The initial challenges were to make accurate components demanded by German technology and to develop moulds and tools. Since then, we have either developed many products in-house or by adapting imported technology for products like multimeters, electrical transducers and isolators, multi-function instruments, solar inverters, cam switches, controllers for DG sets, power supplies, battery chargers and current transformers with many more products to come. Many of our erstwhile collaborators are our large customers today. We have established an independent R&D centre in a separate premise with a full-fledged testing set up with EMI-EMC Lab consisting environmental testing, reliability testing etc necessary for product approvals to meet Indian and international standards requirements.
It has been a long journey for us, which led us to build the expertise in various arenas of analog and digital instrument world. The canvas covered by our products begins with the very simple requirement like measurement and display of basic electrical parameters to endorsing requirements of high-end applications wherein communication with centralised system is required. Our product portfolio provides solution for both, portable as well as panel mount requirement as the case may be.
Some statistics have also revealed that, today we are one of the world’s largest manufacturers of panel meters considering volume. We make close to about 125,000 analog products and about 30,000 digital products in a month. Added to that, we can also manufacture about 50,000 current transformers in a month. So, considering this kind of production capacity, quality and service followed for various product segments, Rishabh has a strong market presence in both domestic and international markets. Our products have an exceptional response in the world market. Our customers worldwide appreciate our patented designs in the TMI domain. Owing to the fact that 60 per cent of revenues of Rishabh stems from international market. We have a healthy ratio of international to domestic sales based on products and services. Rishabh has adapted the philosophy of one product for both markets, that is, we sell the same product manufactured in international as well as Indian market. This proves the quality and reliability of product, irrespective of the region of sale. Therefore, a dominant position has been established across the globe by our business principles and the core values.
What kind of transformations have you witnessed in Indian electronic testing and measurement market in last decade?
India is slowly progressing from price to features to specifications to reliability to safety and the market is maturing at all levels of the test and measurement industries. The era started with measurement and display of electrical parameters (single or multiple) which now has shown motion towards concerns on power quality. Parameters like harmonics, events such as voltage sag, swells or interruptions, flicker etc are now a point of concern and a new scope of measurement, display and record (time-based with user’s discretion or choice).
Rishabh has been a leading player in test and measurement since 1997. The company has witnessed substantial evolution in the products meant for power sector since its inception. Innovation is the key focus of Rishabh Instruments wherein Rishabh had unique product features like automatic blocking system in digital multimeters, rotating jaw – a patented technology for digital clamp meters, operations in a live substation of 400kV with Rishabh’s insulation testers, latest development of Bluetooth communication and Android app for multimeters promoting wireless communication and safe operation.
5KV Digital Insulation Tester is extremely suitable for field-testing and has proven operation in switchyards where the induction voltage field upto 600V is present. We have plans to come up with more products required by power sector to cater to the requirements of similar sectors, become a prominent player, and provide next generation equipment or instruments for future needs. We continue to lead innovations in all aspects of design and manufacture of instrument.
What technological innovations would you incorporate in your products for making them more superior and efficient?
State–of–the-art manufacturing facility and the manufacturing expertise has been core strength for Rishabh. Over decades, we learnt through various experiences and have optimised our designs, engineering, material selection, manufacturing processes, technologies and implementation techniques. The cost competitiveness begins with R&D by selecting the most efficient way of product designing and utilisation of the advance material science. The philosophy has been carried forward when it comes to the engineering and manufacturing.
Optimisation of the bill of material and adaption of newer technologies and skilled work force are key elements of product cost competitiveness. Apart from this, one of the most important dimensions is quality control as it plays a vital role and has a direct impact on the costing. Zero defects, adaptation of 5s principles and right on time are levers to deliver the most cost competitive products with unmatched quality.
Features and functionality were added in the beginning with high-end products, which are then brought down to the low end as required. Example: energy import export features were only in some products but today it is a standard feature. Few Multimeters had RMS, wide band frequency function but now many models have it customers demand for it has also increased. People want higher crest factor with power electronics to produce more and more distorted waveform, SMPS as auxiliary has nearly become an industry standards instead of linear power supplies etc.
How does digitisation help in improving performance and reliability of your products?
Industrial growth in India has seen a major hike recently with a major shift towards innovation and technology. As we all have witnessed the shift from the use of old telephone to smart phone, Rishabh has also been continuously adapting to the new technologies and innovations.
Right from raw material like polycarbonate to ICs (Integrated Circuit Chips) the change has been reflected in every product sufficing need of users and customers globally. Rishabh has been successful in creating Touch Screen multifunction meters, power supplies with three different protection modes, Bluetooth functionality, wireless data transmission and many more such features. Our perspective in global supply has always initiated and adapted the change. Our major products, which are manufactured, undergo a testing procedure that is completely automated and has no manual intervention. Even our analog meters are tested through a closed loop system called as Analog Test Setup and a test report is generated for each and every meter calibrated and tested.
How would you differentiate Indian electrical test equipment markets from the global markets, particularly, European and American markets while offering your services and products?
It is difficult to compare the electrical requirements of global markets but individually could be understood. European countries have cold environmental conditions whereas US conditions are both different. As you are aware, India and major European countries work with 50Hz frequency whereas America has operations with 60Hz frequency. These kind of difference, although peculiar to their respective countries or regions make it difficult for comparison.
As said earlier, Rishabh has been involved in product design and sale of products in all market; one product complying with international standards is our motto. Since inception, Rishabh has adapted the manufacturing of products considering the extreme ranges of various parameters, which make the product robust, self-contained, efficient and reliable. Moreover, the product quality assured is blessed with the help of vigorous testing methods and calibration procedures.
What are your expansion plans in India with the government’s ‘Make in India’ program? What potential do you foresee for your company with the Indian Government’s focus on development of infrastructure like smart cities, roll out of power projects, etc.?
‘Make in India’ is one of the colossal campaign taken by Government of India. To just brief about this campaign, I think it will lead to an increase in exports and manufacturing providing many new opportunities to the young blood in India. It will boost the economic growth in India along with GDP and will solve the employment issues faced by the young generation. It also fosters the entrepreneurial skills within India and many potential business amateurs are turning into successful entrepreneurs. There is a lot of work being done on innovation on both the technology side and business side.
‘Make in India’ creates a higher brand value of Indian products in the international markets. Rishabh has started leveraging the same, as the export business of Rishabh comprises of 60 per cent of the overall business of the company. It conjointly says that all the foreign make companies has to have their 60 per cent manufacturing set up in India. Indian products will also have global level specification and will comply with all international products available in the market with neck-to-neck match to the global players. In India, around 98 cities and towns are in the blueprint to transform as smart cities. There are opportunities for the industries in India to play a catalyst role for this enormous transformation of cities. Rishabh mainly deals in electrical sector and under Smart City initiative; the major transformation would be with electrical grids, energy conservation initiatives, energy utilisation and other such crucial factors. Rishabh has good opportunities with these government initiatives as we are already into the industrial control products and test and measuring instruments.
The government policies like Start-up India, Make in India, Clean Energy, and UDAY will accelerate the growth in this sector with a good pace and would form a sustainable roadmap for this sector. At the same time, it would be prudent to have realistic energy price levels for the non-conventional energy sources to sustain the business model.