NewZNew (Bhiwadi) :
The Saint-Gobain History
“The Customer is King”. Nowhere else has this statement been truer than in the case of Saint-Gobain. Started in 1665, Saint-Gobain’s first customer was Louis XIV, the King of France. And his order? To make glass for the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace at Versailles. Over the next three centuries, through constant innovation in manufacturing technology and introduction of new products, Saint-Gobain has made glass a household item; a building material of choice that, besides satisfying the functional needs, brings immense aesthetic pleasure both to the King and the common man. Since 1665, Saint-Gobain has been synonymous with the future of glass.
Saint-Gobain. The Present.
Today, Saint-Gobain, headquartered in Paris (Annual results 2013, gross sales – 42 billion Euros) is a world leader in building materials. It operates in 64 countries, featuring No 180 in the Fortune 500 list in terms of sales turnover (2013 Global 500). Saint-Gobain has organized its businesses into four sectors – Innovative Materials, Construction Products, Building Distribution and Packaging. Each Business Sector has a strong leadership position in the global market in its area of operation.
Saint-Gobain’s large product range and diverse business activities are such that one comes in touch with the company’s products with surprising regularity in one’s daily life –
- Saint-Gobain is one of the largest manufacturer of automotive glass in the world (over 50% of all the cars in Europe have glass from Saint-Gobain)
- Saint-Gobain manufactures over 30,000,000 bottles, flasks and jars a year
- Saint-Gobain is one of the largest providers of insulation for homes (over one-fifth of all the homes in the US use insulation made from Saint-Gobain)
- Saint-Gobain manufactures the crystals used in airport security detectors and for medical diagnosis
Saint-Gobain Group in India
The Saint-Gobain Group has a strong presence in India across diverse businesses. Currently, the Group operates through nine legal entities in India and Bhutan. The major businesses are: Glass and Glass Solutions, Automotive Glass, Gypsum plasterboard and plasters, Industrial Mortars, Abrasives, Fused and High Performance Refractories, Silicon Carbide and Performance Plastics. In India, the Saint-Gobain Group has a strong presence and leadership positions across these diverse businesses.
Saint-Gobain has also invested in R&D in and for India. Saint-Gobain Research India (SGRI) located in Chennai is the Group’s 7th Transversal Global Research & Development Centre. SGRI is working towards creating products and developing customized solutions for hot and humid climates.
Saint-Gobain Glass India
Saint-Gobain Glass India, a subsidiary of Compagnie de Saint-Gobain, manufactures and markets a wide variety of flat glass products and solutions. It started operations in the year 2000 with the commissioning of its first float glass plant. Since then it has rapidly expanded and deepened its presence in the Indian Flat Glass Market. Today, Saint-Gobain is a leading player in the floatglass industry with a strong brand, a wide range of products and solutions and a pan-India manufacturing footprint (Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and now, Rajasthan). Saint-Gobain pioneered several products, marketing and manufacturing innovations that helped in the emergence of product differentiation and segmentation in what was seen till recently as a Commodity industry.
The World Glass Complex of Saint-Gobain at Bhiwadi
With an investment of over $185 million (about One Thousand Crore Rupees), the World Glass Complex at Bhiwadi is Saint-Gobain’s pride as it is Saint-Gobain’s newest, India’s Largest and world’s most modern manufacturing facility.
The plant has a capacity to manufacture close to 1000 tons of Glass per day and is a fully automated, futuristic (with state-of-the-art robotics), integrated glass facility. The plant features several innovative features that are being deployed for the first time in the Indian Glass Industry.
The Plant’s location is strategic, for the entire glass market of North India can be optimally serviced from Bhiwadi. Further, it being on the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor, gives it significant logistics advantages. Truly, the Bhiwadi Plant will become Saint-Gobain’s gateway to further penetrate the North India market and to better serve its customers.
“I am happy to note that ‘Make in India’ is the new direction of the Indian Government. As Saint-Gobain, we not only agree with this, but strongly support this initiative. In fact, this is our philosophy and, from the beginning, we have invested in setting up world-class and world scale local manufacturing, with the result that about 90% of the Group’s sale in India is locally manufactured. And India has consistently encouraged and supported us – our products are well accepted; our businesses have leadership positions; the Brand Recall of Saint-Gobain in India is as good as that in France. Indeed, we are as much an Indian Company as we are French. In India we have gone beyond manufacturing. We have invested in IT Development Centre, in Engineering Services, in a Sourcing Office and, more important, in 2013, we created Saint-Gobain Research India to build the Group’s 7th transversal Global Research & Development Centre in Chennai.” Mr Pierre-André de CHALENDAR, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Saint-Gobain.
“We strongly believe in India’s future and have consistently invested ahead of time in Capacity, Capability and Technology. The Bhiwadi facility, which is Saint-Gobain’s newest and most modern float glass plant will accelerate Saint-Gobain’s momentum in realizing its Vision of being the Clear Choice for Glass Solutions in India and the adjoining region.” Mr B Santhanam, President Flat Glass South Asia, Malaysia and Egypt, Managing Director, SGGI Ltd.
“Currently, Saint-Gobain Group operates in nine different businesses in India and Bhutan. We have a strong presence and leadership positions in Glass and Glass Solutions, Automotive Glass, Gypsum plasterboard and plasters, Industrial Mortars, Abrasives, Fused and High Performance Refractories, SiliconCarbide and Performance Plastics. India is fast
developing as a key manufacturing hub for Value added products, which are widely exported to the Asia Pacific and Middle east regions.” Mr Anand Y Mahajan, General Delegate of Compagnie de Saint-Gobain for India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
Spread over a campus of 136 acres and with a built-up area of 1.14 lac sq.m, the World Glass Complex is:
- Asia’s largest float glass manufacturing facility with a capacity to manufacture close to 1000 tons of glass per day in the biggest dimensions of glass possible
- A modern plant in which advanced robotic technology has been incorporated
- A benchmark for ‘green’ manufacturing practices resulting in lower energy consumption compared to other existing glass manufacturing facilities
- A ‘Green’ Complex with a host of environmental measures deployed to promote Sustainability
The Bhiwadi facility will accelerate Saint-Gobain’s momentum in realizing its Vision of being the Clear Choice for Glass Solutions in India and the region.