Oct. 5 (Bloomberg) -- JC Bamford Excavators Ltd., a maker of construction excavating vehicles, aims to boost sales in India by 15 percent this year as it taps demand in the nation’s rural areas.
JCB plans to increase sales outlets in Indian villages after more than doubling its nationwide stores to 400 in four years, Vipin Sondhi, the local unit’s chief executive officer, said in an interview yesterday. He declined to say how many new rural outlets are being planned.
The closely held company started selling a smaller version of its backhoe in May to fend off competition from local manufacturers, Sondhi said. Caterpillar Inc., the world’s largest construction equipment maker, and Terex Corp. are also expanding in India as the nation plans to double spending on roads, ports and power projects to $1 trillion in the five years through March 2017.
“We’ve no option as a country but to invest in infrastructure at all points in time,” Sondhi said. “Any infrastructure project requires earth to be moved in some form and that’s the demand driver.”
JCB, based in Uttoxeter, England, sold 21,000 units of construction equipment last year in India. As much as 80 percent of the sales came from small family businesses that rent out backhoes and excavators, according to Amit Gossain, vice president, marketing.
The equipment maker’s two factories in the nation have an annual production capacity of 30,000 vehicles, Sondhi said at the unit’s headquarters in Ballabgarh near New Delhi. The company has invested about 6.5 billion rupees ($132 million) in the India facilities.
--Editors: Vipin Nair, Subramaniam Sharma
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