If TQM (total quality management) or operational excellence marked the first decade of the new century, 2011-20 will be a decade of “accelerated growth'' for the $500 million Rane group, asserts its Chairman L. Ganesh.

Addressing a press conference here on Sunday, he said brand Rane always stood for “trust and reliability''. “Integrity has been one of the core values of our group,'' he claimed. Having travelled thus for and worked to raise operational excellence throughout the past decade, he felt, it was time for the Rane group to grow aggressively.

The 75-year-old Rane group, he said, was working on assorted initiatives to achieve this. For one, the group was keen to create an environment which encouraged innovation and where employees found opportunities. For another, it was also striving hard to create an exciting workplace which provided everybody a good learning experience. The group was determined to outperform the industry growth in the domestic market even while looking for stepping up exports.

Exports

Exports currently comprised 15 per cent of the total sales. He was hoping to increase this to 20-25 per cent in the next three years.

In this context, he indicated that the Rane group would explore all options — upping direct exports to OEM (original equipment manufacturers), taking partner route to boost overseas sales and selling to global replacement markets under Rane brand. Also, he hinted that the group would step up its efforts toward introducing new products.

Capex

Answering a range of questions, Mr. Ganesh said the group would spend this year much less than the projected capex (capital expenditure) of Rs.240 crore. Only 60 per cent of the planned capex would be spent, he said, citing deceleration in the economy as the reason. To a query, he said the group's spending on R&D (research and development) was “somewhat low''. In his view, an R&D spend of 1.5-2 per cent “is ideally healthy.''

L. Lakshman, Chairman of Rane Holdings, said “TQM helped us with total employee engagement.'' He felt that time had come for the Rane group to generate intellectual properties. Both agreed that retaining right talent would the biggest challenge facing the group in the coming days and years.