|Mr. B Venkataramana
VMC Systems Ltd.
1. What are the top 3 innovative trends you see in semicon
Increased proliferation of “smart” devices for security,
telepresence, augmented reality, etc. opening the doors to a
whole new world More sophisticated intelligence in the form of
embedded software, creating a mind-boggling diversity of
possible solutions Greater focus on making semicon technology
“Green” i.e. making the power consumption lower by reducing
power losses in the device
2. What part does India play in VMC’s overall technology
and marketing strategy?
India is the largest market for VMC’s products at present.
India and China are the largest markets in the world for
electronic and semicon products. India, in particular,
provides a great opportunity to design, manufacture and supply
“good-value-for-money” products to a demanding and discerning
customer base. India also has unique challenges in terms of
physical environment, diversity of customers, multiplicity of
behaviours and usage, which puts a great challenge to
designers and engineers, seeking to build reliable and
cost-effective products. It is no exaggeration to state that
products proven in Indian conditions, can be deployed without
trouble anywhere in the world!
3. What are the critical challenges facing companies
looking to develop or expand existing semiconductor companies’
operations in India?
The critical challenges facing companies looking to develop or
expand operations in India are as follows :
Access to pool of “industry-ready” talent. Companies setting
up operations or expanding in India, will have to budget for a
significant investment in technical and non-technical skill
Ability to secure critical resources for operations, i.e.,
electricity, space, transportation and movement
infrastructure, and speedy processing of formalities in a
timely, reliable and economic manner. In the globalised world
of today, countries and geographies that offer these
advantages will rapidly attract industrial investment from
across the world.
World-class quality eco-system, in terms of availability of
suppliers with processes and certifications who are able to
supply large volumes as per need, in a timely and cost
Scalability of business models to reach global scale. All
semicon technology is a large scale business. Only large scale
manufacture will make the product viable in terms of costs and
competitiveness. However, this would also require large
investments in marketing and distribution channels to expand
4. How do you place the competency of Indian product
companies as compared with MNCs?
While Indian product companies acquire technical talent and
capabilities quickly, the ability to transform this resource
to deliver useful and reliable products on time, is a
challenge. Indian companies are imbibing processes used in
MNCs for reliable delivery and communication, but there is
some distance to go, particularly in semicon industry. The
software industry has demonstrated that it is possible to do
so, given the freedom and the opportunity, and a set of
demanding and profitable customers !
5. What would be the key market drivers in 2012?
The key market drivers in 2012 will be the large scale
adoption of mobile voice, data and content management devices
(tablets), which will drive semicon to a new boundary of
growth. Simultaneously, there will be expansion of remote
control applications in home and office security, telepresence
and other applications. On the back of consumer demand arising
from these communication devices, there will be a
corresponding growth in connectivity devices and equipment
from the access to the backbone layer in the network. The
digitisation of cable tv will offer an opportunity to stream
voice, data and entertainment to the individual and the
households with relatively simple and cost-effective devices.
6. How do you see the Indian engineering education
scenario? What do you think are its strengths?
The expansion of quantity in Indian engineering education in
the last two decades is impressive. There are several new
engineering colleges across the country, including IITs, and
NITs. This education infrastructure, if properly managed, and
used imaginatively, can bring India to the next level very
quickly. The strength of the Indian engineering education is
its strong emphasis on conceptual skills, and the consequent
ability of Indian engineers to adapt quickly to changes in
technology and direction. The challenge will be to ensure that
the infrastructure deployed can provide a minimum calibre of
professionals to the industry, with more practical skills than
at the moment.
7. How does your company plan to leverage the unique needs
of India in the various market verticals?
Our company is focusing on expanding reach and product range
to serve the needs of our people in smaller towns and
villages. The operating conditions in semi-urban and rural
India are significantly different from our experience in urban
India. The key features required for semicon products for
these areas, are a small energy consumption footprint,
reliable performance over a wide range of voltage and thermal
conditions, and a definite need for power backup for longer
operation. Apart from this, the customers served in these
areas also need a different set of devices and appliances that
meet their local needs. As I have stated earlier, India
provides the best opportunities to develop good, reliable and
cost-effective products and solutions, which can deployed
anywhere in the world. We will constantly strive with our
product development resources to design, manufacture, deliver
and service products in communications and power verticals,
across institutions and direct customers, across the length
and breadth of our country.
About the author
Mr. B Venkataramana
VMC Systems Ltd.
Venkataramana has over 21 years of experience in finance,
information systems, embedded software technology and business
planning. He is responsible for all finance, HR and
administration activities along with his additional
responsibility of managing the Software Research Group at VMC.
He has an MBA from IIM-Calcutta and a BE from IIT-Madras.
About VMC Systems Ltd.