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Economy & Market

Upcycling waste into eco-friendly sand



The enormous consumption of sand poses major environmental problems for many countries around the world. ZaaK has developed a technology that can upcycle wastes (fly ash, pond ash, and stabilised ash from hard and brown coal, WTE ash, and bauxite residue) into value-added eco-friendly lightweight sand called Lypors®.

The enormous consumption of sand poses major environmental problems for many countries around the world. ZaaK has developed a technology that can upcycle wastes (fly ash, pond ash, and stabilised ash from hard and brown coal, WTE ash, and bauxite residue) into value-added eco-friendly lightweight sand called Lypors®.

Lypors™ is more than just the answer to the scarcity of construction sand and the persistent demand of the construction industry, says Dr Abbas Khan, Founder and Managing Director of ZaaK Technologies GmbH.

Sand mining or dredging is a big problem. How do you look at this problem?

After water, sand is the most demanded resource in the world. Around 50 billion tons of sand is mined globally every year, causing huge environmental issues. Sand is not essential only in concrete and mortar production, but also in glass, cell phones, computers, wine, and even toothpaste. The consequences of the high consumption have not yet been felt in Europe, but in countries like India, sand is scarce. As a result, natural sand is often illegally skimmed off and sold on the black market.

On the other hand, excessive removal of natural sand results in lowering of groundwater, coastal erosions and even the disappearance of islands. The short term solution such as m-sand or crushed stone has a greater negative environmental impact as it is a non-reproducible natural resource.

Unfortunately, these problems are only going to increase in the future as the rate of consumption of sand is twice the rate at which nature produces it.

Therefore, to solve this problem, ZaaK has developed a technology that can upcycle different types of mineral wastes and by-products such as fly ash, pond ash, bauxite residue and ash from waste incineration plants into a lightweight sand called Lypors™. Thereby, through upcycling, ZaaK takes care of the problem of mineral waste disposal while simultaneously mitigating the pressure on the dwindling natural sand resources.

Lypors™, as a secondary raw material is more than just the answer to the issues outlined above.. We at ZaaK enhance the trend of supporting a sustainable industrial society using the earth’s finite resources efficiently and carefully. As a Greentech company and a pioneer in upcycling, we oppose the throw-away mentality and contribute to a circular economy.

Lypors™ is an alternative to natural sand. What technology goes into the making of Lypors™ and how is it better than natural sand?

Lypors™ is a product which is made by upcycling mineral wastes and by-products which normally would have been disposed off, endangering the local environment and habitat. ZaaK’s vision is not only to establish a new standard for a secondary raw material but also a sustainable solution for society and industry.

The technology that goes in the making of Lypors™ involves a combination of mechanical, chemical, and sintering processes. Due to the simplicity and high scalability of our production process, Lypors™ plant can easily be integrated into an existing infrastructure enabling efficient collection of material streams at the waste producer’s site. Lypors’™ properties such as size, shape, porosity and density can be tailored to cater to different market segments.

Lypors™ comes with superior and consistent quality with zero organic impurities, as opposed to natural sand. The latter often contains impurities such as bones, shells, mica, clay and silt, which make it inferior for use in mortar and concrete.

Lypors™ is ready to use, which means no further screening, washing and drying are required. Furthermore, being up to 55 percent lighter than natural sand it is easier to transport, load/unload and has a lower risk of injury. A mason can place up to 20 percent more wall area and lift approximately 25 percent less weight per year using Lypors™ mortar compared to normal sand mortar. To cut a long story short, Lypors™ is a premium construction material for ecological and sustainable construction.

Please tell us about the advantages of Lypors™ based concrete over sand concrete.

Lypors™ optimises structural efficiency by improving strength to weight ratio allowing architects to design expressive roofs and taller buildings, add additional floors to existing structures and build on sites with poor soil condition and design wider bridge decks with minimum modifications to existing structural supports. Our study has found that the concrete made from Lypors™ can reduce size of load bearing elements, including columns and footings resulting in savings of up to 32 percent in reinforcement and up to 31 percent in concrete in a building.

Once Lypors™ has been used in a building the building owners will benefit from higher efficiency. Lypors™ concrete has two times better thermal resistance than normal concrete. Countries like India, where the temperature most of the year around is beyond 30 Deg C, can benefit from the energy efficiency of the building, saving electricity cost of cooling the building.

How has been the demand for Lypors™? Could you name some of your clients or projects where it was used extensively?

With the establishment of our Technology Innovation Centre in Germany, we have formed strong partnerships with various construction material manufacturers to design and develop our products for different construction material applications. ZaaK is currently in the process to set up manufacturing plants in cooperation with waste and by product producers in Europe, North America and Asia. Lypors™ has been already tested by various leading construction material companies and they are ready to buy Lypors™ when commercial production begins.

We see that the need and awareness for alternative ecological construction materials, such as Lypors™, is steadily rising and in future the demand for sustainable construction materials will increase: This is pushed, on the one hand, by the ever increasing scarcity of natural construction materials and on the other hand by a heightened ecological consciousness.

Logistics is a huge problem in India, especially in the cement business. How do you look at this problem?

Yes, logistics is a huge problem in India due to various factors like vast distances, underdeveloped infrastructure and transport systems, inadequate material handling systems, manual loading / unloading etc. The burden is felt acutely in industries where heavy materials are transported, e.g., in the cement and construction industries. This issue can be partially alleviated by moving away from traditional materials to new-age ones, e.g., by substituting natural sand with Lypors™ resulting in reducing weight, and hence handling cost, including that of downstream products like ready-mix concrete, dry-mix-mortars, plasters etc. ZaaK’s technology enables manufacture of such products, making their transport more efficient.

You claim saving up to 25 percent fuel in transporting for the same volume of material compared to natural sand. How?

Construction requires transportation! And there is a direct correlation between fuel consumption, weight and environmental impact. According to a study, due to being up to 55 percent lighter in weight, transporting Lypors™ in 14 tyre trucks will save up to 25 percent fuel compared to transporting the same volume (40 m3) of natural sand.

The infrastructure sector in India is receiving huge attention from our government. Do you think it’s a good opportunity to scale up your operations? What are your future plans?

Our process and products address three important and burning issues of the day: conversion of millions of tons of waste product into inert material, prevention of sand dredging & erosion, and provision of high-quality building material with low life cycle costs. These reasons are compelling enough to lead to accelerated adoption of our technology. Government attention to the building industry will certainly add to these tailwinds. We believe that the industry is increasingly ready to adopt environment-friendly technologies. We are in discussion with multiple entities across the globe, including India, for the early adoption of our product and technology. We will establish our presence in India this year across the value chain.

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Economy & Market

KEC International wins orders of Rs. 1,092 crores




KEC International secures orders for T&D, railways, civil and cables.

KEC International Ltd., a global infrastructure EPC major, an RPG Group Company, has secured new orders of Rs. 1,092 crores across its various businesses:

KEC has secured orders for Transmission and Distribution projects in India, Middle East and Americas.

The business has acquired an order for 2 x 25 kV Over head Electrification (OHE) & associated works for speedy upgradation in India.

KEC is also operating across various segments like Residential, Industrial and Defence in India and has gotten orders for types of cables in India and overseas.

Vimal Kejriwal, MD & CEO, KEC International Ltd. commented, “We are pleased with the new order wins secured across our business verticals. The orders in T&D have enhanced our order book in both domestic and international markets. Our Railway business has further consolidated its presence in emerging/new areas, with the order in the Semi High-Speed Rail under Mission ‘Raftaar.’ The Civil business continues to be on a high growth trajectory, with consistent order inflows across segments, especially metals & mining and realty.”

Images Source: Google Images

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Nailing the mega deal




Adani Group’s takeover of Holcim’s stakes in Ambuja Cement and ACC is touted as the biggest open offer in the history of corporate India.

At the open offer price of Rs 385 per share, using a key industry valuation metric of enterprise value (EV) per tonne, standalone Ambuja Cements NSE has been valued at nearly $299 per tonne. In contrast, ACC at an open offer price of Rs 2,300 per share is valued at about $131.4 per tonne. This reflects the inherent differences in the operational efficiency and thereby performance of the respective companies.

Other leading players in the cement industry, like Ultratech, which has the largest capacity in the sector with nearly 120 million tonnes, is currently valued at the stock markets at nearly $199 per tonne. Shree Cement with a capacity of nearly 47.4 million tonnes is valued at about $223 per tonne. Enterprise value is a measure of the company’s total value, and it is calculated by adding market capitalisation of a company plus its debt and minus the cash in the books.

The standalone Ambuja Cements has one of the highest operating margins in the industry, and in FY 2022, Ambuja Cements standalone operating profit margins were nearly 23 per cent, a decline of 4.6% YoY, on sales of Rs 14,268 crore. Meanwhile, ACC’s standalone operating profit margins were at 18.4 per cent, a fall of nearly 0.9% YoY in the 12 months ended FY 2022. In the case of Ultratech, standalone operating margins were at 22.7 per cent during FY 22, a fall of nearly 4%. Shree Cement recorded a 22.2 percent margin as against 30 percent in the previous year due to surge in power and fuel costs.

It is interesting to compare today’s scenario with the one 10 years ago in September 2012 when ACC was valued at $132 per tonne, similarly, enterprise value per tonne of Grasim and UltraTech was $121 per tonne and $176 per tonne, respectively. In case of Ambuja Cements, the company’s valuation was at $171 per tonne. The 212-million-tonne cement industry then saw major deals at a valuation of as high as $235 a tonne paid by Irish firm CRH for My Home Industries in 2008. Portuguese player Cimpor paid $162 for Shree Digvijay Cement Company in 2007 while Holcim paid $200 for Ambuja Cements.

However, the deal in June 2008 when French firm Vicat paid $100 a tonne for Sagar Cements, was the lowest in the previous years of M&A activities. The story has not changed as event then as now, coal prices rocked the destinies of cement companies. The decline in coal prices from as high as $160 a tonne to as low as $70 a tonne changed fortunes even then.

Coming back to the current scenario, the key problem continues to be the rising prices of pet coke and coal doubling during the year. Cement firms reported single digit sales growth for the second consecutive quarter in January-March driven by gradual demand recovery as well as price hike even as higher costs due to rise in crude oil and coal prices impact profits and margins. Competitive prices are compelling cement makers to explore alternatives to coal.
Over the next few months, the demand for coal and pet coke is expected to slow down while the prices would continue to remain high. Although cement prices have also hiked up, the rise is not enough to make up for the fuel prices. The inability to pass on costs fully to customers remains a primary concern. Now with the RBI raising the repo rate demand is likely to continue to shy away.

Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Pratap Padode

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Economy & Market

3i EXPO & Conference gets a rousing response from the manufacturing industry; IPF presents awards to 19 SMEs from across India




3i EXPO & Conference – hosted by Industrial Products Finder (IPF) from May 20-21, 2022 in Mumbai – received an arousing response from the Indian manufacturing sectors with senior representatives from some of the leading companies like Emerson, Godrej & Boyce, Aditya Birla Group, Reliance Industries, Mitsubishi Electric, etc visiting the event.

Mr Sanjay Bhatia, Upa-Lokayukta, Government of Maharashtra, inaugurated 3i EXPO & Conference; Consul Generals of Sweden, Mauritius, South Africa, Hungary, Indonesia & Brazil participate in 3i EXPOWith 40 exhibitors and over 35 speakers in conference, 3i EXPO witnessed 1,167 visitors over the two daysSenior Representatives of leading companies like Emerson, Godrej & Boyce, Aditya Birla Group, Tata Technologies, Reliance Industries, Mitsubishi Electric, Schneider Electric, Yokogawa, Wipro PARI, Thyssenkrupp, Sanofi, Hitachi Vantara, etc visit 3i EXPOIn the presences of who’s who of the industry, Industrial Products Finder (IPF) presented the 6th IPF Industrial Excellence Awards to 19 SMEs across various industrial sectors

23 May 2022, Mumbai

3i EXPO & Conference – hosted by Industrial Products Finder (IPF) from May 20-21, 2022 in Mumbai – received an arousing response from the Indian manufacturing sectors with senior representatives from some of the leading companies like Emerson, Godrej & Boyce, Aditya Birla Group, Reliance Industries, Mitsubishi Electric, etc visiting the event. During the event, Industrial Products Finder presented the 6th IPF Industrial Excellence Awards to 19 SMEs across various industrial sectors.

The 3i EXPO (which stands for IPF for Industry 4.0 & Innovations Expo) was inaugurated by Mr Sanjay Bhatia, Upa-Lokayukta, Government of Maharashtra, in the presence of Ms Anna Lekvall, Consul General, Consulate General of Sweden; Mr Mike Pal, Trade and Commercial Attache, Consulate General of Hungary; and Mr Pratap Padode, Editor–In-Chief, Industrial Products Finder (IPF), and Managing Director, ASAPP Info Global Group (the publisher of IPF publication).

Highlighting the significance of 3i EXPO, Mr Pratap Padode, “MSME units are capable to become a critical part of the manufacturing supply chain and be globally competitive because of their diverse offering ranging from intermediate to final products. The Ministry of Heavy Industry & Public Enterprises, Government of India (GoI), has launched Smart Advanced Manufacturing and Rapid Transformation Hub (SAMARTH) Udyog Bharat 4.0 to facilitate and create an eco-system for propagation of Industry 4.0 in the Indian manufacturing sector. Now, the stage is all set for the adoption of smart manufacturing and Industry 4.0 technologies with the government actively supporting the cause. Industrial Products Finder has completed 50 years in 2022 and is proud to present its first edition of 3i EXPO in the quest to help MSMEs scale the next industrial revolution.”

Speaking at the inauguration, Chief Guest Mr Sanjay Bhatia stressed on the need for digitalisation for the industry as well as government agencies. “Introduction of digital technologies in government departments like port, town planning, railways, etc has brought in immense amount of efficiency in terms of planning and execution of projects. Adoption of modern technologies are must to raise the productivity.”

While Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) was the Presenting Partner of 3i EXPO and Conference, Union Ministry of MSMEs and National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) were the Supporting Partners of the EXPO. IFM and Robro Systems were the Associate Partners of 3i EXPO.

Various industry associations and organisations extended their wholehearted support for the event. While Automation Industry Association (AIA) was the Knowledge Partner of 3i EXPO, CareEdge and T Hub were Analytics Partner and Start Up Partner, respectively. Other associations like PPMAI (Process Plant & Machinery Association of India), ITAMMA (Indian Textile Accessories and Machinery Manufacture Association), MAIT and Association of Multi-Modal Transport Operators of India (AMTOI) also participated in the event.

Showcasing technology prowess

With 40 exhibitors displaying more than 100 innovative products for automation and modernisation of the Indian manufacturing sector, 3i EXPO witnessed 1,167 visitors over the two days.

Exhibiting companies showcased their innovative products and solutions that can help Indian manufacturing sector to gain competitiveness. Exhibitors were happy as they could showcase their latest products and technologies to visitors which included top management and senior representatives of some of the leading companies like Emerson India, Godrej & Boyce, Aditya Birla Group, Tata Technologies, Reliance Industries, Mitsubishi Electric, Schneider Electric, Yokogawa India, Wipro PARI, Thyssenkrupp, Sanofi, Hitachi Vantara, etc.

Visitors gained knowledge on the most trending technologies and engineering processes for meeting the need of automation and Industry 4.0. Exhibitors included companies from sectors such as automation & robotics, additive manufacturing (3D printing), Artificial Intelligence (AI)/Machine Learning (ML), Augmented Reality (AR)/ Virtual Reality (VR), connectivity modules, data analytics, electronics components, industrial IoT solutions, sensors, motors & drives, rapid prototyping & tooling, and vision systems, among others.

Some of the exhibitors were IFM Electronic; Robro System Pvt Ltd; Bohmen Industries; Steam Solutions; Varay Image Runners; Avcon Controls; Subtronics India; Surface Modification Technologies; etc.

Session on “Manufacturing Innovation Hub” – in partnership with T-HUB – presented a platform to the young entrepreneurs and start-ups who showcased their innovative solutions for the industry.

Discussion the future of manufacturing

During the 2-day 3i Conference, about 35 Industry Leaders deliberated on the future course of the manufacturing sector and how modern technologies can play a big role in achieving the goals of making “Make in India” scheme. Topics such as India’s journey towards Manufacturing 4.0, implementation challenges for advanced technologies and probable solutions to overcome challenges, policy supports required for making India the next manufacturing hub of the world, etc were discussed during the multiple panel discussions.

Some of the speakers who presented their views during the 3i Conference included Mr Anil Bhatia, VP and MD, India Automation Solutions, EmersonMr Zurvan Marolia, Senior VP, Godrej & Boyce; Mr N C Chakrabarti, VP & Head – Smart Manufacturing, Reliance IndustriesMr Sunil Mehta, GM – e-F@ctory Strategic Planning, Mitsubishi Electric; Mr Vivek Bhatia, MD, thyssenkrupp Industries India; Mr Priten Bhadrakumar Bangdiwala, Sr. VP & Head – Industry 4.0, Aditya Birla Group; Mr Sajiv Nath, Managing Director, Yokogawa; Mr Deepak Panda, Senior GM, Schneider Electric; Mr Sandeep Shukla, Regional COE Head – Digital Manufacturing, Tata Technologies; Mr Sanjeev Dharwadkar, Sr. Director – Manufacturing, Sanofi India, Mr Nandakumar K, CMD, Chemtrols Industries; Mr Rajeev Solanki, DGM – Manufacturing Technology & Process Development, Schneider Electric, Mr Khushal Kalra, Head – Smart Factory, Wipro PARI; Mr Harshit Sureka, Founder & CEO, ROBRO Systems, etc.

Stating that it was important to start the investment in digital transformation, Mr Anil Bhatia, VP and MD, India Automation Solutions, Emerson, said, “You do not need huge investment for adopting digital solutions. The company can opt for solutions based on their needs and objectives. But it is imperative to embrace digital as it can take your business to the next level.”

Mr Zurvan Marolia, Senior VP, Godrej & Boyce, emphasised on the need for the industry (especially the MSMEs) to take baby steps while adopting automation to deliver better results. “Automation is a double-edged sword. If done properly, it will give you rich dividends. If not, it can give you a cut. Each enterprise automation is need is unique. So, choose automation appropriately to achieve the desired objective.”

IPF Awards: Rewarding the performers

On the second day of 3i EXPO and Conference, the 6th IPF Industrial Excellence Awards were presented in categories like Fastest Growing Manufacturing Companies; Product Excellence; and Entrepreneur of the Year (Male & Female).

For “Fastest Growing Companies” Awards – given to listed companies based on their growth performance of sales and profits – are presented in 3 categories of Small (for companies having revenues of upto Rs 100 crore or below), Medium (Rs 100 crore to Rs 250 crore), and Large (Rs 250 crore to Rs 500 crore). The winners of “Products Excellence Awards” were selected after evaluating the products on parameters like novelty, green or sustainability, USPs, etc.

In the presences of who’s who of the industry, IPF Industrial Excellence Awards 2022 were presented to 19 SMEs across various industrial sectors.

Next: A grandeur show in 2023

The first edition of 3i EXPO & Conference was launched with an aim to provide a collaborative platform to accelerate adaption of modern manufacturing technologies for companies to gain competitive edge globally. With the maiden edition receiving good response from the participants, the scale and scope of the next edition of 3i EXPO & Conference will be grandeur. See you next year.

List of winners of the 6th IPF Industrial Excellence Awards

IPF Female Entrepreneur of Year: Dr Dnyanada Bandodkar, Director, Hindustan Monomers Pvt Ltd

IPF Male Entrepreneur of Year: Shreekant Patil, Founder, Paramount Enterprises

Winners of IPF Product Excellence Awards 2022

Building & Construction MaterialJSW Steel Coated Products Ltd for its High Tensile GP for torque tube used in mounting of Solar panels
Machine ToolsMaharashtra Engineers for its 7 Axis 2 Spindle CNC Horizontal Machining Center (HMC)
MRO & ConsumablesHindustan Monomers Pvt Ltd for its patented product – 2,4’ – dihydroxydiphenyl sulfone (24BPS)
MRO & ConsumablesMinimac Systems Pvt Ltd for its special Coalescer purifiers used for lubricating oil and transformer oils
MRO & ConsumablesPGE Industries Pvt Ltd for its unique Fluid Sealing Solution that can handle both dangerous acids and gases effectively
Testing & Measuring InstrumentsSubtronics (India) Pvt Ltd for its breath alcohol analyser Alco-Booth Pro (for Truck Management Software use)

Winners of IPF Fastest Growing Companies Awards 2022

Agri & Food Processing (Small)Alfavision Overseas India Ltd
Auto Ancillary (Small)IST Ltd
Auto Ancillary (Medium)Hindustan Composites Ltd
Engineering (Large)Pix Transmissions Ltd
Engineering (Small)Thejo Engineering Ltd
Fertiliser and Chemical (Large)Aries Agro Ltd
Pharma (Large)Kwality Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Pharma (Medium)Syncom Formulations India Ltd
Plastic, Paper and Packaging (Large)Mold-Tek Packaging Ltd
Plastic, Paper and Packaging (Medium)Hindustan Adhesives Ltd
Steel and Non-Ferrous Metals (Small)Raghav Productivity Enhancers Ltd

About Industrial Products Finder (IPF):

Industrial Products Finder (IPF), launched in 1972, is today one of the oldest and most trusted brands in the industrial publication space in the country. It is one-stop-shop solution provider for all the sourcing/procurement needs of the Indian manufacturing sector. Published by Asapp Info Global Group, IPF offers a comprehensive coverage on industrial & engineering products services and provides manufacturers a dual forum (print and online) to display their all latest, innovative solutions. IPF is the country’s true pan-India publication with presence in all major cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, Coimbatore, Ahmedabad, etc.

Every month IPF reaches more than 100,000 readers through its magazine and website which offers an assortment of news, views/interviews, technical articles, product information, etc. IPF is widely circulated to manufacturing sectors including automobile and auto components, electrical & electronics, machine tools, hydraulics & pneumatics, printing & packaging, plastic processing, chemical & pharmaceuticals, mining & steel, FMCG, and general engineering industries. The magazine reaches out to various government institutions for their sourcing requirements including Defense, Railways, Science & Technology, and Research & Development.

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