Amit Chakrabarti Saicon Hardware
With a dedicated R&D center in Kolkata, SAICON is constantly developing new products for fenestration market and exporting them to over 42 countries across the world. "We have started our journey with a Portable Welding machine and in a short span of time, forayed into various other verticals of uPVC window & doors such as hardwares, profiles, and glass jewellery. We're working hard and looking ahead to explore new verticals and markets. Our main aim is to provide products and services with maximum affordability without compromising on the quality," says Mr. Amit Chakrabarti, Export General Manager, Saicon Hardware in an interview with Maria R.

What is your overview of the Indian Fenestration market? How important this market is for Saicon?
Indian fenestration market is gradually propelling itself to a wider reach of customers. Fenestration is and was the face of architecture, and since customers are now smart enough to understand their needs and choices, the traditional practices have taken a backseat.

uPVC Sliding Touch Lock
Like I said, fenestration is the face of architecture and Saicon is the face of fenestration. Saicon has always shown excellence in the field of fenestration and with fenestration gaining importance, we do see a positive paradigm shift and an increase in demand for innovative products in the market of fenestration. This has also prompted several new ideas and scope for major improvements which can be a scope for major improvements and can be a great opportunity for a company like SAICON to open its arms of development for the next stage.

As Indians being quite reluctant to adopt new products, how do you see uPVC market in India, in terms of product-understanding and its proper usage?
It is true that Indian customers lack flexibility to accept new products. But having said that, it is also true that now people are getting educated about the benefits of uPVC windows and doors but there is still a large market to be tapped and a long way to go for the product itself.

Saicon Fenestration Hardware
Cost cutting by builders due to the sluggish market has also slowed the progress of uPVC windows and doors in India. The result being asked the same question of "how much more will it cost than aluminium windows."

What are the significant challenges for marketing these products in India?
The only visible challenge is competing with extremely non-standardized low cost aluminium windows. Even after understanding the benefits of uPVC windows & doors, a builder will still stick to his per-determined budget which makes it difficult to push the product in big projects.

Please tell us about your complete product range and their USP.
We had started our company with the introduction of only one product that was the Portable Welding Machine to weld uPVC windows and doors. Gradually, in the last three years, our company has grown exponentially and now we are having the following range of products:
  1. Portable uPVC Window and Door making machines.
  2. uPVC Window & Door Hardwares
  3. uPVC Window & Door Profiles (Under development)
  4. Glass Jewellery
Nylon Single Grooved Roller
We are one of the companies in India who have a dedicated R&D center in Kolkata where we constantly try to develop new products for the market of doors and windows fenestration. Our Glass Jewellery is one of those products developed in our own R&D facility.

We have till date exported our products to 42 countries globally.

Tell us about your Portable uPVC window making machines.
Our portable machines were developed to help fabricators who are having a tight budget to get an opportunity to open a workshop or factory of his own to manufacture upvc windows & doors.

We are by far the largest uPVC Window Machine sellers in India and the fabricators from all corners of country are using our machines to carry out their businesses successfully.

We provide our customers complete training tutorial videos and literatures to carry out their work smoothly.

Our machines are even approved by DIC of different states which makes it possible for fabricators to even get a loan on our product from the government.

What sales and after-sales services you are providing to the buyers of your window manufacturing machines? Do you impart the market know-how to the customers?
Our customers not only get detailed training from us but we also provide them with disciplined after sales service. We sometime even help our customers with project costing and material procurement list initially. We always want our customers to earn a good living by using our product. We believe that if they grow we will also grow together.

What are your expansion plans foreseeing the opportunity from 'Housing for all' scheme?
"Housing for all" scheme can only come true if quality goods are available for an affordable price. One buys a house to live for the rest of his or her life not for the next few years. So, using quality products in construction is very important.

We, at SAICON, are working every day to improve our products and strive towards making it more affordable. We have now forayed into other verticals of uPVC windows & doors like hardwares, profiles, and glass jewellery.

Our main aim is to provide products and services with maximum affordability without compromising on quality.

MGS Architecture February 2017