“Kirby is proud that it has become a generic name in the PEB space,” remarks D Raju, MD, Kirby Building Systems India Ltd.
Since 1999, Kirby has been pioneering the PEB concept in India. Earlier PEB was used in only lower-end buildings. With increased acceptance, PEB is being used in high-end manufacturing facilities and other such complex structures. In an interview with ACE Update, D Raju talks about the wide acceptance of PEB concept.
India and construction and infrastructure industryQuality of construction has improved significantly over the last decade due to increase in exposure to the global construction technologies and best practices. The project duration has become shorter, and there is a special focus on safety standards. There is a shift from in-situ construction to factory-controlled pre-engineered high-quality construction. This has also changed the requirement of engineering, material and skills required for the construction industry. Kirby recognised this trend early and introduced the concept of pre-engineered steel buildings (PEB). In PEB, customer requirements are custom-engineered and high-quality material is delivered to site in ready to erect condition where semi-skilled people assemble these components using cranes for faster construction. The industry is moving from pre-engineered buildings such as warehouses and commercial buildings to highly complex pre-engineered sections in infrastructure such as ports, oil and gas utilities and so on. With adequate attention from the government, this industry can dramatically reduce construction time for industrial and infrastructure sectors. Pre-engineered construction impacts speed, quality and pricing of industrial construction. This construction has green benefits and a high resale value. It’s not surprising that Indian industrial construction is eminently poised for a big pre-engineered steel building (PEB) wave given India’s renewed focus on infrastructure and the new industrial thrust. The central government’s “Make in India” campaign and recent approval of ordinance for amendment of Land Acquisition Act for development of infrastructure and industry related projects will further give a boost to the economic growth as this was one of the major hurdle in delaying many projects. These reforms and many other such initiatives in coming future as promised by the government is expected to make the Indian construction and infrastructure segments much more stronger and increase its percentage share in the GDP contribution.
Adding growth to KirbyKirby India is involved in design, manufacture, supply and construction of steel structures which are in the range of a very simple warehouse to complex factories or power plants to high-rise structures for commercial or residential purpose. All these projects are CAPEX driven and purely based on the investment as per the requirement of their products and services in the market which is related to the demand-supply situation. Many other factors such as country’s economic growth, global market scenario, purchasing power parity and consumer sentiments play a pivotal role in shaping the future investments and planning of new projects. Therefore, all these factors are very important for the company’s growth as increase in announcement of new investments and more projects in the manufacturing sector directly affects its growth and future planning. Any increase in growth of the Indian construction and infrastructure segments will also help Kirby grow both in terms of value and volume in coming years and maintain its leadership in the PEB industry.
X-FactorsConstruction contributes to more than 66 per cent of total steel consumption. In developed countries, more than two-thirds of the buildings are made in steel. The government should promote steel as construction material for speedy implementation of the projects and avoid cost overruns and project delays. The new government is planning for implementation of 100 smart cities, and this can be efficiently done using pre-engineered steel construction as done in developed countries providing an affordable and sustainable material for construction. Concessions in the form of tax incentives could also be extended for steel construction industry.
Kirby and current market scenario Since Kirby pioneered this concept in 1999 in India, there is a huge response to the PEB concept and many industrial constructions are being constructed today with PEB. Earlier, PEB was used in only lower end buildings like warehouses. With increased acceptance and aggressive marketing from Kirby, PEB is being used in high-end manufacturing facilities, power plants, commercial buildings, shipyards and many other such complex structures. MNCs, consultants and Indian corporate understood the benefits of this innovative — yet tried and tested construction technology — and became early adopters. Kirby had the privilege of partnering with most of the leading corporate and other companies from all types of industries: micro, small, medium and major by setting up their facilities across the sub-continent. Kirby is proud that it has become a generic name in the PEB space. Today, it is building higher specialisation for complex constructions such as ports and oil and gas industries as well as similar complex structures. The company has already constructed more than 15,000 different buildings which are spread over an area of more than 22 million sq. metres in India and over 65,000 building globally across 70 countries. All these buildings are designed, manufactured and constructed over a period of over 15 years in India for all the industry segments which itself is one of the biggest achievement for any PEB company and positions itself in a different league among all the competitors.
Today Kirby is one among the market leaders in India and successfully operating its two state-of-the-art PEB plants in Hyderabad and Haridwar each with a capacity of 100,000 tonnes per annum, respectively and directly employing over 2,000 people, 700 engineers and 250 industrial design experts and 100 project managers. Kirby has also developed a large builder network with over 120 certified builders across the country. Also, Kirby’s construction process is ISO 9001:2008 certified and lays special emphasis on reducing the environmental impact during the construction phase.