OEM Systems Group is the umbrella brand for BAG Electronics and ZALUX for over a year now. The areas of expertise and products from both the companies combined in the OEM Systems Group supplement each other ideally. The Group claims to create intelligent and individual solutions for professional lighting via efficient cooperation and customised technologies. As a system partner for intelligent lighting solutions, the Group keeps busy unifying the depth of experience and knowledge from many decades to support the global lighting industry even more efficiently and comprehensively. As of now, both brands in the OEM Systems Group – BAG and ZALUX – have continued to lay the way in the past decades with pioneering new developments.
The Group with its locations in Germany, Spain, India and the Philippines, currently markets its products to over 70 countries in five continents with innovations in its core. A dedicated team of engineers keep working on new products development and bring forth special solutions to meet customer-specific requirements. With production sites in Spain, the Philippines, India and China, the Group supplies its products at maximum technical levels ranging from electronics to metalwork and plastic processing. Additionally, it keeps investing in new machines for its production sites as well as the expansion of locations. The priority at OEM Systems Group is to work closely with customers to ensure that product expectations are not only met, but also exceeded so as to ensure long-term and successful corporations.
All this makes LED World curious to know about what and how OEM Systems Group is making things better in the Indian LED lighting industry. To quench our thirst, we caught up with B. S. Praveen, the Group’s Managing Director in India. Here is what he shared through an email interaction with us:
It’s around a year now that ‘bag electronics’ becomes ‘OEM Systems Group’. How this name-change has transformed the company’s profile, of course, with expanded area of operations? Please discuss.
There have been a number of changes in the BAG group globally, as a result of this new umbrella brand. In countries where both BAG and Zalux were existing as separate identities, now it is just one identity, as OEM-Systems which caters both for BAG and Zalux. We are now able to offer full solutions to OEM’s in the lighting industry –i.e. control gear, LED modules, diffuser, other components of the luminaire etc. as a one-stop-shop. In India the change has been to a lesser extent, as the presence of Zalux was much lesser here. However, we are offering full solutions to OEM’s in India too.
With the establishment of OEM Systems Group, what new have been added to the company’s portfolio to help boosting its presence in the Indian lighting/ electronics arena?
We are now offering matched combination of Driver plus COB’s or LED modules, luminaire components, assembly services, etc. Besides, we are also providing solutions to those OEM’s who have been affected by mandatory BIS implementation – by offering our range of BIS-approved products, or assembling in India.
How is OEM Systems Group being benefitted from ‘Make In India’ drive? Please share some instances.
As a result of Make In India push by the Government, many sellers in the luminaire industry are now looking for products made in India, rather than just buying from overseas and selling. Such companies have started using our products or manufacturing services to supply Made In India products. And not only Made in India, BAG has an extensive range of products that have been designed in and for India, keeping the Indian requirements, conditions, and pricing in mind – and these products are, of course, also made by us in India. By this, we are able to provide the Indian consumers with a much more robust and reliable product range, which are able to do well and truly withstand the rigors of the Indian environmental and power conditions and provide them with a ‘fit-n-forget’ peace of mind.
To what extent Central Government’s initiatives DELP & SNLP followed by Smart City Projects have paved the way for OEM to materialise the opportunities?
These initiatives are creating demand for energy-efficient LED lighting products in the market. All the OEM’s which are truly wanting reliability and eager to keep away from cheap products that become a source of constant headache later, are using our India-specific range of products.
As you know, customers’ requirements have changed significantly due to the arrival of LED technology. Especially in the lighting, electronics is getting more complex. How are you coping up with this transition/ development in the industry?
By coming out with our India-specific range of products designed to suit local conditions, and using our knowledge and experience of being in the lighting field for over hundred years, we are helping our customers to cope up with this changes. BAG is helping the Industry not just by providing reliable products at competitive pricing, but also able to provide advice and solutions to complex technical problem that some of our customers face. Our German-trained, Indian experienced technical team is capable of analysing and resolving any complex issue faced by our customers, and provide appropriate solutions and products. It is true that the LED technology is very new, and not only complex, but also very deceptive – but not for those who have taken BAG as a partner.
LEDs are known to have immense energy saving potential wherein electronics play a vital role. How OEM’s electronics is helping LEDs achieve its potentials to ensure longevity, given the erratic power conditions in India?
This is specifically the reason why BAG embarked on the design of their India Specific range of LED drivers. The driver in an LED luminaire is the heart – and once this heart is strong robust, it not only protects itself, but can also protect the LED chip from the exigencies of rough power conditions. We are BAG India studied the power conditions in India over years, not just at few locations, but numerous and varied locations in cities, in towns and villages, in industrial areas and residential areas, in areas where failure of electronic equipment were more prevalent, in simple as well as sophisticated areas, shops, malls, factories, offices etc. This study and careful analysis of this data has enabled us to be able to come out with our India Specific range. The performance of our, close to a million products, in the field is the proof. A luminaire driven by a BAG driver is all that’s needed to give a peace of mind to the users.
There is always the talk of new technology absorption in this industry. What according to you are the latest technological advancements in this sector that the industry can see from OEM Systems Group’s banner?
The LED technology itself is the latest in the lighting industry. This technology itself is evolving almost on a daily basis – newer and newer LED chips are coming with more and more improved energy efficiency, better ways of using the LED chip and driving it are emerging, not to say of the numerous varieties of applications that the LED light is finding. And for the less enlightened who thought of the LED technology as anybody’s cup of tea and embarked into it, with almost no experience of leave alone LED, but even of lighting; they have started realizing that to make a good and reliable LED product, there is lot more needed than just a table top electronic assembly equipment. As a result the massive failure rates of LED products seen in the initial years of this technology are now coming down and BAG is proud to be ahead of the pack on this front.
Do you feel that the recent push in the form of DELP & SLNP from the Centre with respect to LEDs will give the industry a fillip? What more needs to be done? What further does the government need to do in this context?
Government has definitely helped the LED industry by lowering the Excise duty for LED products, mandating BIS, the DELP & SLNP schemes etc. This has given good boost to the LED industry in addition to the drive that the industry is getting due to its massive energy saving potential. Government needs to pay more attention upon the strict implementation of the mandatory BIS scheme. Despite the Government regulation, you openly find a number of spurious imported products of questionable quality in the market and the uninitiated consumers are being cheated.
The other area that Government can help the industry immensely is by incentivizing production of electronic components and LED chips within the country. Today a vast majority of electronic components are to be imported, simply because no one in India makes them. With the present growth rate, the business case to justify making even sophisticated components in India should be possible – all that the Government needs is to provide initial taxation incentives etc. for entrepreneurs to set up these production units.
What are the major growth drivers for OEM Systems Group’s business in the country? Where do you see the group in the next five years?
We see very good growth potential in the India market. More so now, with the products being developed for India, rather than trying to sell what was developed for other markets, in India. We also see ourselves coming up with newer and newer products that are appropriate for the Indian consumer’s need through our deep understanding of the Indian market, the technical strength, local manufacturing. In terms of our brand image, popularity, and perception we have made progress in leaps and bounds in the last few years – we see that moving ahead strongly in years to come.
At a time, when quite a few manufacturers are busy sourcing half the electronics from cheap overseas markets, how are you promoting good practices in the country’s LED lighting arena? What steps are you taking to ensure the quality of the products?
It is unfortunate that in the electronics industry, even today, the majority of the components are not manufactured in India, more so the high tech and high value components. Majority of the components are made in China, Taiwan, Europe etc. So, despite not preferring, we have to import major chunk of our components. Wherever possible, we have localised the components by working closely with the local suppliers and in many cases helping them to improve their quality to global level. In those cases where we have no alternative but to import, we have a very strong sourcing regime, which consists of supplier audit and evaluation prior to start of buying, ensuring the components are always bought only from the approved sources, and not from any questionable distributor in the market, ensuring that the components meet all our specifications, including those of tight tolerance etc. With this, regardless of where we buy the components from, there is no compromise of quality. And apart from making a robust and good quality design, sourcing of good reliable and repeatable quality is a very important part for making our products one of the most reliable and robust.