Industrial Products Finder (IPF), India's largest circulated industrial magazine in its 48th year, hosted its 4th IPF Industrial Excellence Awards on January 16, 2020 at the National Stock Exchange (NSE), Mumbai, during which 19 SMEs from 16 Indian cities were presented the awards in recognition to their achievements during the year.
IPF Industrial Excellence Awards 2020 was held in the grand presence of Guest of Honour Naseem Sharifi, Consul General of Afghanistan; Bhavesh Thakkar, Partner (Tax and Regulatory), Ernst and Young LLP; and Rachana Bhusari, VP - SMEs, National Stock Exchange of India Limited (NSE).
Every year IPF Awards are presented in two categories - "Fastest Growing Manufacturing Companies" (under Rs 500 crore turnover) and "Innovative Products". This year, in addition to the regular two award categories, IPF presented awards in two new categories - "Promising Start-up of the Year" and "Entrepreneur of Year (Female and Male)" to recognise and appreciate the contribution of start-ups and entrepreneurs in job creation and economic growth. While Mohini Kelkar, MD, Grind Master Group, was the winner of the "IPF Female Entrepreneur Of the Year", Jignesh Raval, MD, Sintercom, was the "IPF Male Entrepreneur Of the Year". "IPF Promising Start-up of the Year" awards were presented to Divide by Zero Technologies, Navi Mumbai, and Arrelic Reliablity, Bhubaneswar (Odisha). The winners were selected by a jury panel comprising eminent personalities from the industry and engineering institute.
Congratulating the winners, Guest of Honour Naseem Sharifi, Consul General of Afghanistan, said, "India and Afghanistan have strong bilateral relations for decades, while India has been an active trading partner. Currently, India's exports to Afghanistan amount to about $700 million. Afghan exports to India have increased by 60 per cent. We respect India's love for our products like Saffron. With bilateral trade, India is rebuilding Afghanistan."
Highlighting areas where SMEs can empower themselves, Pratap Padode, Founder & President, Foundation of Infrastructure Research Studies Training (FIRST), informed, "SMEs being backbone of Indian economy will always strive to think -What can I do apart from what I do? Just one per cent SMEs today below Rs 2.5 billion businesses are filing their yearly returns. If they increase tax collection increases. Higher the tax collection will result in more schemes and more schemes will help SMEs grow."
ECGC was the Associate Partner, while National Stock Exchange (NSE) and CARE Ratings were Exchange Partner and Knowledge Partner, respectively. Besides, leading industry associations like Plastics Machinery Manufacturers Association of India (PMMAI), Pimpri-Chinchwad Plastic Association (PCPA), MAIT (Manufacturers' Association for Information Technology), MRO Association of India, and Federation of Associations of Maharashtra (FAM) extended their support to this event.
IPF also hosted a highly engaging "CEO Forum" panel discussion on the theme of "Essential survival strategies for SMEs". The panel discussion was moderated by Saikat Roy, Director & Head -SME, CARE Ratings. The panellists - comprising Rachana Bhusari, VP -SMEs, NSE; Mohini Kelkar, Managing Director, Grind Master Group; Nitin Pangam, CEO, Maeflower Consulting; Vijayanand Choudhury, Global Head Procurement, Tata Technologies; and Neeti Sharma, Senior Vice President, TeamLease Services-discussed some of the imminent challenges before SMEs and strategies to thrive in the challenging market conditions.
In his opening remark, Saikat Roy, said, "Industry is going through VUCA (Volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity) phase where market conditions are unstable. The government has come up with bunch of projects but the ground reality differs." He suggested looking at challenging time differently as a lesson and vividly exploring new opportunities.
Speaking during the "CEO Forum" panel discussion, Rachana Bhusari said, "SMEs should start considering IPOs for meeting their funding needs. There is a dedicated MSME platform at NSE which helps connect investors and MSMEs. Listing itself on NSE will also help them achieve overall competency and will indirectly help them to transform themselves from suppliers to innovators."
In his keynote address, Bhavesh Thakkar, Associate Partner -Tax & Regulatory, Ernst & Young India, enlightened the audience about incentives available in India for SMEs and how to avail those incentives. He stated, "Unawareness about the incentive policies, and lengthy & cumbersome process are holding back SMEs from opting government schemes. However, the process is worth that hustle and bustle. Once the subsidies are availed, a company will initiate the process wisely from then onwards. Various benefits like set offs, claims or savings on import duty can be availed under these schemes."
He also suggested SMEs to keep interacting with government authorities for more insight on government schemes. During the event, IPF SHOWTIME was unveiled which profiled all the winners of the IPF Industrial Excellence Awards 2020 and their achievements showcasing their contribution to India's industrial products success story.
List of winners of IPF Industrial Excellence Awards 2020