The Panel Business in India Will Spiral-Up in The Short-Term and Taking Off in the Long-Term - Mr Bolton, International Sales Director, SUFOMA Machine

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SUFOMA has successfully completed 14 projects in India, covering wood and bagasse-based Particle Board /MDF manufacturing lines. To serve their customers after-sale service, the company is going to build a local after-sale service team and spare parts center in the mid of 2020. They also plan to give a free maintenance service to their entire sanding machine user. Sufoma is also introducing calibrator in plywood unit and they already got many orders of calibrator in India. In 2020, they will also design a tailor-made proposal for 500cbm/d Particle Board line with 4ft continuous press, just like they did the same two years ago for MDF line. During a chat with The Ply Reporter, Mr Bolton, International Sales Director, SUFOMA Machinery Co Ltd. informed the plans of the company for India in 2020.

Q- SUFOMA is a reputed brand in India. Could you please let us know how you manage and operate SUFOMA brand? What SUFOMA has achieved so far in India?

A- We are a state-owned company in China, and we do have a certain standard to represent the image of China. I would like to put FOCUS and PERSISTENCE to differentiate us from others. We focus on high-end customers only and we persist in our focus. We are the only company in China for world-based-panel machine industry that we develop all the key machines in the house. This could be a unique advantage for us. It’s been 10 years since the first Particle Board line of SUFOMA delivered to ACTION TESA, India and we have achieved a lot in delivering more plants, building our name and having more friends here. We are happy and also lucky with what we have achieved

Q- We came to know that SUFOMA already got two orders of MDF continuous press lines in India. Could you please let us know the status of those projects?

A- In the India Wood 2018 at Bangalore, we held a presentation to introduce a tailor-made MDF proposal for India market which yielded very surprisingly positive responses. We got two orders from India after that presentation as the proposal did get resonance from the people who are ready to set up a new MDF project. The price we gave is also very attractive. We came to know from the success that if we do something from customers’ thinking latitude, it will work. The project is a little bit delayed due to the well-known licenses chaos in UP. Manufacturing is in process, and we will deliver the machine as soon as the license issue is cleared. We anticipate the complete delivery in 2020 and have the first board produced in the third quarter of 2021.

We came to know from your sharing that SUFOMA has many projects in India now. We know after-sale service is very critical for the customers and the success of the machine supplier. Could you explain what kind of aftersale service SUFOMA can give to satisfy the Indian customers?

Yes, we do have many projects now, roughly 14 projects in India, covering wood-based and bagasse based Particle Board line/MDF line. We strongly feel that we need to improve our after-sale service quality to all our customers. The after-sale service should be easy to access and quick to respond. That is why we have a big concrete plan to build local after-sale service team and spare parts centre in 2020. We have done a lot of preparation work in this regard with our local agent already, and hopefully it will open in the mid of 2020.

Q- How do you evaluate wood-based-panel industry in India, now and future? The MDF productivity was doubled to 5000cbm/d in last two years’ time, what is your take for MDF market in India, short-term and longterm respectively?

A-  I always compare to China when vision on what will happen to the wood-based-panel industry in India. China has capacity of 200,000cbm/d MDF and 100,000cbm/d Particle Board. The productivity in India is just like a newborn baby with huge potential. India and China have a lot in common, we both have a big population. We are under process of urbanization, infrastructure construction which will last for long time. There are all the booster for panel consumption and this trend will not turn around. India is a free market economy. Market does have ups and downs due to supply and demand change. But the ultimate direction is very clear to me. The panel business in India will spiral-up in the short-term and taking off in the long-term.

Q- The India Wood Exhibition is coming soon in Feb. 2020, will SUFOMA attend the fair? If yes, what is the target for SUFOMA in 2020?

A- We attend Wood Exhibition in India since last several years. India market is always our priority. I would like to take this opportunity of participating in Indiawood to invite all India friends to visit our booth and sit with us for a while. We have advertised in Ply Reporter for what we target in the exhibition and the complete year of 2020. We plan to give a free maintenance service to our entire sanding machine user whether they bought directly or through the middle man. They can just come to our booth and register there and we will send service engineer to their site right after the exhibition.

We will also introduce our calibrator in plywood unit as plywood business is under the branding process and calibrator is the contributor. We already got many orders of calibrator in India and we believe we can do more.

In 2020, we will also design a tailor-made proposal for 500cbm/d Particle Board line with 4ft continuous press, just like we did the same two years ago for MDF line. The super quality Particle Board will prevail soon in India which, now, has a huge quantity of low-quality PB and ignorable super quality one. This gives us a big impetus to design for India and build together a super quality PB line with state-of-the-art continuous press. Again, the price will be even more attractive than previous MDF one. Really excited and looking forward to the opening day of that tailor-made proposal.

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