Bosch Packaging has opened a new manufacturing facility in Goa, India, to cater to its growing customer base in the booming emerging market and increase sourcing for its European headquarters.
The packaging machinery division of German technology group Bosch says its new facility covers 2,600 square metres and will make packaging technology equipment for food and pharmaceutical customers in India.
The company already counts several leading multinationals among its key India customers including Pepsico, Cadbury, ITC Foods, Parle, Perfetti, General Mills, Effem, Dehli Flour Mills, Godrej Foods and Monsanto. Last year it sold around 100 machines to the market.
But it expects to see growing demand in India driven by major changes in the emerging economy. As modern retailing develops in the country and purchasing power increases on the back of economic growth, consumers are increasingly shopping in supermarkets for packaged foods and drinks. Producers of commodities such as rice, wheat and sugar are using packaging to brand their products.
The new Bosch Packaging plant in Goa, which was officially opened last month, employs 80 people and has an initial installed capacity of 120 machines a year, mainly fully automatic form-fill-seal type packaging machines. The firm plans to increase this to 240 machines in three years.
"In our target market we have a 25 per cent share and we are the market leaders in this segment," said Thomas Buehler, head of the firm's India operations.
The Indian market for packaging machines grows at about 15 per cent per annum, he told FoodProductionDaily.com.
The firm says it will focus on candy wrapping, snack food and biscuit packaging as well as packing for flour and milk powder, spices and rice with around 80 per cent of its sales to the local market. The rest of the machines will be delivered to Africa and the Middle East.
"We will offer latest technology products at affordable prices and reliable service back-up," added Buehler. He did not reveal the price range of the machines to be produced in the India plant.
Bosch Packaging also expects the Indian operation to become a sourcing point for the company's other sites such as Europe, said Buehler.
Bosch already has a plant in Bangalore but the Goa plant gives it access to good infrastructure to supply to the rest of India and to leading universities for sourcing talented employees. There is also a good supplier base for assembly of the machines.
In 2006, the Bosch packaging business reported a turnover of approximately €570 million.