In an e-interaction with Cooling India, Rikard Wallman, President & CEO, Fergas Group

Fergas Group has been providing air moving solutions for over 70 years. In India, the company presents itself through its subsidiary Fergas India Pvt. Ltd. In an e-interaction with Cooling India, Rikard Wallman, President & CEO, Fergas Group, is revealing their plans for India to P. K. Chatterjee (PK). Excerpts…

What are the major ‘air moving’ products being supplied by Fergas India at present?

Fergas India is supplying crossflow blowers, centrifugal wheels and blowers to the Indian market today to serve industries like ventilation, refrigeration, air handling units, appliances and railway applications.

In India, what is your business priority to be a design partner or a product supplier?  

During 75 years of existence of Fergas, we have always aimed to be a design partner using our long experience in designing and producing Air Moving Solutions. Air moving is an integral part of so many applications and Fergas’ job is to support our customers in choosing the right solution that optimises the performance with regard to airflow, energy efficiency and sound levels.

What kind of difference in demand do you find in India compared to European countries?

India is gearing up in a rapid pace towards ‘green’ products and higher energy efficiency with the BIS efficiency norms coming for commercial air conditioning and refrigeration system. We feel that our focus on sustainability globally and the fact that Fergas products are already designed for the European and Global market can add a great value to the Indian customers in reaching their ‘green’ efficiency goals. Otherwise, we do not see much difference between Indian or European customer demands.

How is your business shaping up in India in the post-corona years?

We started our Indian office in 2019 – so it had a tough start with the pandemic hitting India so hard in 2020/21. Post-corona, we have felt a very positive vibe from our customers and potential customers about India’s future – and it makes us excited to play a part in this great country’s journey for the coming decades. 2023/24 is shaping up to be our best year yet in India.

What is your short-term (say next 5 years) expansion plan for India?

Our goal is to establish ourselves as a customer-focused design-partner to Indian customers with focus on high product quality. Our desire is to find enough business for us to establish local assembly and manufacturing in the coming 5 years.

How are you planning to cater to your customers across the country from your office at Chennai?

We not only use our sales office in Chennai as our base to serve our customers with sales and order support – but also with local warehouse to offer products with shortest possible lead time. From our base in Chennai, we also travel and meet customers all over the country on a regular basis.

Where is your R&D lab, and what kind of excellent products is it designing for the Indian environment?

We have R&D and technical support in all of our manufacturing sites in Sweden, China, Italy and the USA. We are learning everyday of the requirements from the local Indian market – and how we need to adapt. This is something that we as a global supplier are used to – as it’s required more or less from all new markets that we have approached during the years. As an example, we are adapting our products to suit the Indian railway market.

How cost-competitive are your products to suit the Indian market?

We believe that for customers are looking for high quality products, Fergas is very competitive. Over a time our aim is to have local assembly and production in India to optimise our competitiveness.

What would you like to communicate to the Indian business decision makers?

I would like to communicate that Fergas and Fergas India are very committed to India. We have a long experience (75 years) in the global air moving markets – and we are humble to learn and understand how we can best serve the Indian markets. Being in India, a huge personal bonus is that I get the opportunity to taste the best food in the world.

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