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Virtual International Tooling Summit - Opportunities galore for toolmakers

ITS 2020: Opportunities galore for Toolmakers


At a time when the pandemic has thrown the global economy out of gear, toolmakers in India have been struggling to stay afloat. On November 27 and 28, 2020, TAGMA organised the first-ever Virtual International Tooling Summit to help toolmakers find their way through these challenging times. Honourable Union Minister Shri. Nitin Gadkari; Mr MSR Prasad, Distinguished Scientist & Director General - Missiles and Strategic Systems (MSS), DRDO; and several other prominent personalities of the tooling world graced the two day event. They offered insights about the tooling industry, which were very well received by the 500+ professionals, who marked their presence virtually. This event turned out to be an eye-opener that guided toolmakers to find opportunity in adversity.

The fifth edition of the International Tooling Summit (ITS) and first-ever Virtual International Tooling Summit-cum-virtual expo was held on November 27 and 28, 2020. The ITS, which is India’s largest die and mould gathering, is organised every year by the Tool and Gauge Manufacturers Association (TAGMA).

The theme for this edition of the virtual ITS was ‘Tooling Self Reliance in India and New Frontiers of Growth’.

The two-day event saw around 15 leaders sharing their insights about the industry through two panel discussions and seven technical sessions.

 Inaugural Session

The event began with a welcome note by Mr. D. K. Sharma, President, TAGMA India. Addressing more than 1,200+ professionals from across the globe, who participated virtually, Mr. Sharma said, “The current pandemic has taught us a lot. For instance, adopting digital is no longer an option, but more of a compulsion. The first-ever virtual ITS is the result of such learnings.” Mr. Sharma also elaborated on the slew of government initiatives that could help the manufacturing sector.

“Over the past few months, the government announced various production-linked incentives for different manufacturing sectors, which is a welcome move. However, to fully realise the potential of the Indian manufacturing sector, localisation of the tooling ecosystem would be pivotal. To put things in perspective, all the major manufacturing hubs across the globe boast of an equally strong tooling industry, with India being a notable exception. The whole ecosystem of the industry, including OEMs, tier-I suppliers, government bodies, and toolmakers, should collectively and cohesively work towards realising an increased share of manufacturing GVA to the economy,” he explained.

In his speech, Mr. Sharma also highlighted the challenges that Indian toolmakers face and spoke about their expectations from the government and OEMs. The welcome speech was followed by the launch of the ‘Tooling Report’ by the Honourable Union Minister. The ‘Tooling Report’ was prepared by TAGMA in association with Nomura Research Institute India Pvt. Ltd. It provides comprehensive details about the Indian tooling industry.

In his inaugural speech, Honourable Union Minister Shri Nitin Gadkari said, “Tooling industry is like the heart of the manufacturing industry. It has immense economic importance. We cannot dream of having a strong manufacturing industry without a robust tooling industry,”

“The die and mould industry is the backbone of the manufacturing industry. The Government of India understands its economic importance in the country and is committed to increasing the share of the manufacturing industry in the country’s GDP. For this, we will need strong tooling support. I would like to assure toolmakers of huge business opportunities in the coming days. However, you must focus on innovation and new product development. Indian toolmakers should aim to play a big role in the global tooling industry. From the Government’s side, I assure you that we will work closely and formulate some policy reforms that are more industry-friendly.”

The event’s Guest of Honour, Mr MSR Prasad, mainly discussed the current activities and plans of the defence ministry. He also spoke about the huge opportunities available for toolmakers in the defence sector.

Proceedings of Day 1

Panel Discussion
The insightful views were followed by the first panel discussion ‘Cross industry perspective on the role of tooling in localisation and expectations from toolmakers’. The panel discussion was moderated by Mr. Ashim Sharma, Partner & Group Head, Business Performance Improvement Consulting (Automotive, Engineering & Logistics), Nomura Research Institute India Pvt. Ltd. The panelists were Mr. Ganesh Mani, Director – Production, Hyundai Motor India Ltd; Mr. Akshay Sangwan, Director – Development & Commercial, Sonalika Group, and Mr. Bhupender Saharan, CEO, VVDN Technologies.

The discussion revolved around the expectations from the OEMs from tooling suppliers. While the panelists highlighted the huge opportunities available in their respective industries, they also stressed upon the need for Indian toolmakers to work on enhancing their efficiency and capacity.

Technical Sessions

A technical session on ‘Advanced coating solution for forming tools’ by Mr. Pravin Shirse, Country President India, Oerlikon Balzer, was received well. After the highly engaging session on coating solutions, Mr. Alexander Baesgen, Head of Tooling Technology, Oskar Frech GmbH & Co. KG, delivered a technical session on ‘OEEmax | Process Excellence made by Tooling Technology’. The third technical session of the day was initiated by Mr. Muthusezhiyan N, Principal Counsellor, CII Green Co., on ‘Enhance competitiveness of MSMEs through adoption of green practices’. In his session, Mr. Muthusezhiyan spoke about the importance of green practices in manufacturing and their bene!ts. The last session for the day was on ‘Hand holding support by the government for MSMEs through The National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC)’. It was held by Mr. P. Ravi Kumar, Chief General Manager, NSIC.


Proceedings of Day 2


The second day of the virtual event started with the opening remark by Mr. D Shanmugasundaram, Vice President, TAGMA India. In his speech. Mr. Shanmugasundaram thanked Honourable Chief Guest Shri Nitin Gadkari for his reassuring note. “It was very encouraging to learn that the Government of India believes in the big economic importance of the tooling industry and the role it is going to play in the success of ‘Atmanirbhat Bharat’. The industry needs a collaborative approach to make India a strong tooling hub,” he said. In his speech, he also thanked Mr MSR Prasad for charting out opportunities for toolmakers in the defence sector.


Technical Sessions

The first session of the day was on ‘Target Costing in Die Design’ by Mr. A. N. Raman, a financial consultant. The session was well received by toolmakers, who have always found this subject very challenging to deal with. This was followed by a session on the famous Japanese technique of Monozukuri by Dr. Ranganathan. Monozukuri means ‘production’ or ‘making of things’ in Japanese and is the Japanese term for ‘manufacturing’. The broader meaning encompasses a synthesis of technological prowess, know-how and spirit of Japan’s manufacturing practices. The third and last technical session was delivered by Mr. V. Chandramouli from SIDBI. He highlighted the various schemes of SIDBI and explained how Indian toolmakers can avail of these.


Wrapping it up
The last session was a power-packed panel discussion on ‘Indian Tooling Industry: gearing up for Better Tomorrow’. The panelists were Mr. Vinod Kubher, Executive Director, Prabha Industries; Amit Kumar Parashar, Sr Vice President, Operations,Tool Room, Central Quality, Service & QS, Subros Ltd; Arvind Chawla, Managing Director, Zahoransky; Martin Pinto, Executive Director, Shapers India Pvt. Ltd. and was moderated by Marc Weinmann, Chairman, VEM Tooling. The panel unanimously agreed that indeed there are many challenges such as payment terms of OEMs, need for policy reform, availability of raw materials, and land & !nance availability. The Indian tooling industry needs to !nd ways to deal with them.


Partnership and Virtual Expo


Virtual Expo

The concurrent virtual expo was also organised along with the summit with 18 partners who showcased their latest technologies to the virtual visitors from around the world. Companies that were participated were DMG MORI, Makino, AMS, COSMOS, MAZAK, Mitsubishi EDM, Goel Steel, Hitachi Metals, Hurco, Schneider (L&T), Multiple Special Steels, PCK Buderus, Phillips, Schunk, Swiss Steel, Voestalpine, Mastercam, Millutensil, among others.

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