The unveiling of 1st 'Make in India' Acrylic laminates from Meraki Laminates Industries Pvt Ltd was broadcast live on the Ply Reporter Facebook Page. During the launching programme Mr. Sanyam Singla, Managing Director, Meraki Laminates Pvt Ltd discussed about the features and the product USP in conversation with Mr. Rajiv Parashar, Editor, Ply Reporter under its flagship program VIEW POINT.
Acrylic laminate is an emerging product in the market, there is no doubt in it. With Make in India in this product category the supply, service and design innovation will be visible in the market by Meraki Laminates Pvt Ltd. The company is the most trusted brand of India for interior products. They started their journey in 2015 with the manufacturing of PVC laminate as the first Indian manufacturer. Within a short span of time Meraki proved its success many times with the introduction of many innovative products with excellent creations.
Meraki, the industry leader in PVC laminates, now started with the venture of manufacturing Acrylic laminates as Acrylam reflective surface as the first Indian manufacturer with a standard thickness of 1.5 mm. These offered acrylic laminates are 100% antiscratch and the choice of every high end interior needs of the customers. It comes in ultra high gloss finish in various ranges, like ultra radiant’s, auto metallic, marvel finish, mirror finish and natural solids with an exclusive feature of 6H hardness compatibility with the home interior giving extra ordinary reflection.
Meraki Acrylic laminate comes with many exclusive features like Anti-yellow technology, extreme sign surface and water resistance. In order to meet the premium niche of acrylic laminates of customers especially in the market, the company brings highly effective manufacturing with special German technology where its employees carry out the manufacturing process in the most effective manner and eco-friendly environment.
Q&A WITH MR. SANYAM SINGLA, DIRECTOR, MERAKI LAMINATES INDUSTRIES PVT LTD
Mr. Sanyam Singla graduated from PIET NCR College, Sonipat, Haryana and PG from SP Jain School of Global Management, Mumbai. He keeps investing in new innovative ideas & product development. He looks after all the sales and marketing pan India. Meraki started with an initiative for the first Make in India by manufacturing PVC laminate that makes the industry feel proud. Here is a brief on the discussion.
Why did you enter into Acrylic laminate manufacturing?
Six years ago when we launched make in India PVC laminate, since then we have worked a lot in the niche market. Our fellow manufacturers of PVC laminate have also done very good for the growth of the industry. In just five to six years this industry has obtained tremendous growth.
Secondly we have come up with Acrylic laminate because we were continuously getting reviews from our channel partners that Acrylic laminates demand is very good. So, we were working on it for a long so that we can short out the problems coming before it. We were with the objective that until getting comfortable with the product, do not launch into the market. so, this is not a sudden entry into this segment, when we had launched PVC laminate first time that time also we had announced about the Acrylic laminate as a next step on growth trajectory. Now after solving all technical issues we have come up with Acrylic laminate.
For the new offering what are its USP, colours, designs and range?
The acrylic laminate Acrylam catalogue from Meraki has been launched. It is the combination of Acrylic plus laminate which has been built with innovative reflecting surfaces. It gives very good reflection giving it a splendid look and grace. It has been launched in 1.5 mm thickness with 6H hardness compatibility. The catalogue has 56 designs which include solid colours, auto-metallic, marble finish, mirror finish and a complete range. The purpose of showing the catalogue is that people treat it as a complete catalogue. It will fulfil all their requirements as we have included everything in it.
As you are saying that PVC laminate and Acrylic laminate has its own market without competition between them. So, what are the applications of acrylic laminates?
This is not that the PVC laminate and Acrylic laminates have different application areas. Wherever the PVC laminate is applied the Acrylic laminate application can also be there. But, the difference is that the market has its own choice and for different segments of customers the range of product and its quality changes. The market works according to that. Those who are required to have PVC laminate will go for that. But, those who require Acrylic laminates will go for Acrylic laminates only. As I told you that we have included several innovative designs and ranges in it with good collections that can be used at any interior place. It is most suitable for offices, banquets, cinema halls, malls, etc. Today for the manufacturing of modular kitchens and OEMs prefer to use acrylic laminates.
How do you see the acceptance of Meraki Acrylic laminates in the India market?
As I told you earlier that the product did not come all of a sudden, we have dedicated a lot of effort and research after the demand enquiries began to come from the channel partners one and half years before. And we had decided to bring Acrylic laminates with tag ‘Make in India’ just like we had come up with PVC laminates six years back. We observed that at retailers' end the demand is very good. Everyone wants to get made in India products and not remain dependent on Imports this is why we are getting its very good acceptance in the market.
Many people think Acrylic is a boom and many of them say that retailers have better margins so that they are taking interest in it. What do you say?
I think there is no reason that retailers are willing to sell acrylic more and there are more margins in it. See, when a new product comes into the market everyone in the trade wants to have that product in their portfolio because they want to be ahead of the market. Take the example of PVC laminate. Any company comes up with a new folder and its sales growth increases for the time being due to new designs. This is the reason everyone wants to sell Acrylic laminates and the product category is seeing a boom today.
If we talk about the retailer's margin, we request them to work with a reasonable margin with our quality products and excellent after sales service. It will maintain your goodwill for a long term in the market.
How will you promote this new offering in the market?
This is a Meraki product and every distributor is willing to have some new products in the offering. Across the country their overwhelming supports help us to innovate. This is the result of their support that we have come up with Acrylic laminates, so we will definitely promote Acrylam through our distributors’ channel. In the six years of our service to the industry this is a record that every enquiry generated on our portal is directed to the distributors of that area to serve the customers. The lead generated at the company end is dealt through the distributors as for the company its channel partners are at top priority.
Among the Acrylic and PVC laminates, which one is close to your heart?
Differentiating among them is really very tough. Let me ask you! If anyone has two babies, one is five years old and the other is a new born baby, does he differentiate among them? Not at all! Similarly both of the babies are the same to me and we will give equal attention to them.
In PVC laminate you are a market leader. Still, I would like to ask what’s new you are coming up with in PVC laminate?
In PVC also on a daily basis the improvements are going on. In this segment we have brought two new folders ‘colour book’ and ‘stone wood’. For both the catalogue we have worked very hard. In the colour book all premium solids and basic solid colours have been included. This is a double side folder in which a good collection of PVC has been included. We are offering the highest range of colours in PVC laminate. While, in Stone Wood – which is also a double side catalogue in which one side all wooden collections have been included and the other side all marble collections have been included that would be much liked by Architects and Interior designers. This catalogue is like a kit so we call it Stone Wood Kit. We are extensively working with Architects and interior designers. But, the company’s master folders will already be there in which all these would be available. But, with these new catalogues we are giving separate presentations for the premium segment of customers.
Besides PVC laminate and Acrylic laminates, if any other offering is in the pipeline?
Definitely we are coming up with more innovative products, that’s a trade secret up to now. But, I had told at the time of launch of make in India PVC laminate that we will be coming up with new and innovative products every six months and that legacy will continue. Currently we are working to establish a new plant for making Exterior Cladding. That would also be quality products and will open a new avenue in the exterior decorative segment.
It is said that the PVC laminate demand has come down in the last six months. Do you agree with it? And what is your suggestion for its improvement?
It cannot be agreed to the fullest. But, if compared with the last to last year’s sales there is slight decline but the demand did not come down. The slowdown is due to the economic slowdown and increase in raw material price. Once resin was at Rs 70/kg is now at around Rs 150/kg. You can assume that the raw material prices are double now, so the finished product price has increased a bit which is just a 20 to 30% hike due to which there is an apparent slowdown in sales. With correction in the raw material cost its demand will increase
We are expecting that in the coming times the PVC market is going to double to the present level. I would like to suggest the manufacturers make quality and complaint free products that will be beneficial to you as well as the industry growth. We should connect to Architects, Interior designers and guide carpenters and contractors. These industries have a very good chance to grow many folds. If there is any issue we are ready to guide and help them every time.
What is your message to the dealers/distributors and the viewers?
The associated channel partners’ support is incredible to the growth of the company as well as the industry at large. We request you to be associated with us as we are coming up with numerous innovative products under our make in India initiative.
What is your message to the Ply Reporter in service to the industry?
Ply Reporter is itself a very good platform for the industry players, for example we have launched the Acrylam catalogue sitting at the office and events are being seen across the country. The Ply Reporter has wide reach across the country and the laminate and wood based industry players follow it with curiosity. The team Ply Reporter is doing very good for the industry. I hope more people from the industry will be associated with it and benefit from its valuable content.