He decided to forego the on-campus placement and started his own technology-based company. In those days, everyone from premier business schools dreamt of a career with a multinational, and startups were a big no, recalls the now 53-year entrepreneur and founder of Gujarat based Rotomag Motors & Controls Pvt. Ltd.
Recalling those early days of his entrepreneurial journey, Balani says an idea to make special motors for the emerging market of battery-operated devices was then fleshed out on the campus. His family contributed with the seed capital of Rs 2 lakh, and that’s how his venture took off with a small team of just three employees.
However, considering the technology prevalent in those times, the team soon realised that the products and the technology involved were new for the Indian market. This meant the team had to do a deep- dive into the nitty-gritty of design, technology and manufacturing.
As the firm began adopting industry best practices across functional domains, its reputation received an enormous boost. Today, thanks to Balani’s consistent toil over the years, the company has earned a name for itself as a quality manufacturer of high-efficiency electric motors used across sectors.
Backed by expertise in product engineering, the company claims to be one of the very few companies in India which can customise and design high-efficiency electric drives and motorised solutions for a variety of applications. This includes applications for emerging fields such as solar pumps and electric vehicles.
“There is a growing demand globally for high-performance electric drives for control systems, including robotics, solar powered pumps, electric vehicles and battery-powered equipment. Rotomag offers customised high-performance drive solutions for new age applications like battery-powered devices, solar pumps, renewable energy. Over the years, Rotomag has developed unique capabilities to combine electric motors with allied devices and create smart solutions using electronic controllers, software and monitoring apps,” says Balani.
The entrepreneur claims that Rotomag is the first company in India to use advanced permanent magnets in electric motors and can deliver more efficient motors through the use of brushless DC technology using rare earth magnets. Using this novel approach, he adds that compared to other companies, which focus mainly on the design side, Rotomag has developed some proprietary manufacturing processes which enable its product to deliver higher performance over its competitors.
In FY20, the firm, with a headcount of 300 employees, clocked a standalone revenue of Rs 181 crores with an EBITDA of 22%. At the ETRISE Top MSMEs Ranking, Rotomag was ranked third in the India’s Top Performing MSMEs category.
Riding high on the back of robust exports of 2000 plus different models to over 35 countries, the company expects to grow by 100% in the current year and claims to have a “secured order book”.
From next year, Rotomag’s annual growth is expected to be about 25%, says Balani. Elaborating on the firm’s expansion plans, he talks about its two-pronged growth plan. While in product verticals like solar pumps and drivetrain for e-vehicles, it wants to grow multifold Y-o-Y for the next few years, it also has plans to grow its business of electric drives at 20% per annum. This it plans to do by developing new products and acquiring new customers.
“The plan is to cross Rs 500 crore in the year 2020-21, and the current order book is exceeding this number. Rotomag expects to cross Rs 1000 crore in the year 2024-25,” adds Balani.
Download the Top MSMEs Ranking e-Handbook.