Automotive Horizon
November 2013

Ranka Steels Reaches A Production Capacity Of 5,ooo Tonnes In 2012 Under the able leadership of Ashok Ranka, Director, Ranka Steels, the company has reached a production capacity of 5,000 tonnes this year from a fairly miniscule 100 tonnes back in 1981, the year it started production.

When Ashok Ranka entered the business, the company was focusing on supplying to the furniture industry, with the production capacity of around 300 tonnes.

Altering focus

Spotting the humongous opportunity that was surfacing in the OEM industry, Ashok Ranka was quick to enter the market, starting initially as a supplier to the smaller OEMs. Given his shred business acumen, Ashok got the wind of it that the steel market was centered around vendors, as a service industry and not as a direct retail product targeting the end customer. That saw the transformation of his production centre one that focused on service where value was added to the product. That was the genesis of Ashok Ranka’s association with Tata Steel.

Ranka says: "Ours was one of the first service centres certified by Tata Steel. What is more, our unique standing as a production centre was the huge flexibility offered in service, catering to multiple vendors from a varied industry group".

Thanks to his intuitive move, along with the fruits of labour, Ranka Steels witnessed a steep rise in production capacity, from a mere 500 tonnes to 5,000 tonnes within a decade during which the Indian industry too saw a big transformation in its composition and focus.



Recognising the success of Ashok Ranka's model in transforming both the production capacity as well as the focus, leaning towards a service provider, Tata Steel changed the phase of its business model. Ashok Ranka’s model was soon replicated by the steel giant in 15 different cities. Awards and recognition came calling.


Spotting opportunities

For Ashok Ranka, expanding a business essentially narrowed down to sighting opportunities when they arose and seizing them on time. 'The per capita consumption of steel in India back in 2000 was only 30 kilograms. As against this, China featured at 100 kilograms, while Japan and the US were both at 250 kilograms. This spelt an immense business opportunity in India, in the foreseeable future, what with the opening up of the economy and changing face of our industry", Ashok points out.

Without any procrastination, Ashok Ranka was quick to jump into the bandwagon, foraying into the vendor sector where he started supplying to the automobile industry that set up plants in south India. There has been no turning back since then.

The Bommasandra plant was established in 2007. Eventually, the firm's OEM market continued to be a smooth entry and ride, given the service offered, raising the production capacity in excess of 2,000 tonnes by 2007.



As for inspiration, Ashok Ranka points to Tata Steels. "Here is a firm which decided to set up operations on a massive scale in an area that had no infrastructure, with rough terrain, difficult access, with limited communication, yet made a remarkable success of the venture to become a landmark in the Indian industry", Ashok Ranka reminisces. His pugnacity and resilience, perhaps stems from this inspiration.

Ranka adds: "Tata Steel did not stop with establishing their production unit, but reached beyond to address social needs of the local society where they had chosen to set up their plant. Nothing can be more inspiring than witnessing such commitment and foresight"