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Signify expanding in India, evaluating manufacturing capacity for global market: Top exec

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The ecosystem required for electronics in the next 6-7 years is going to be far more developed

New Delhi: Signify’s India market is becoming more important by the day, and it is evaluating the manufacturing capacity in the country under the China Plus-One strategy, a company official said.

Signify India has started playing an important role not only in the domestic business but also in helping our global business to grow from India, said Sumit Joshi, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of Signify Innovations India.

The Indian market of Signify — earlier known as Philips Lighting — is playing a big role in the design and R&D of Signify’s global lighting business and as an ecosystem for electronic products as semiconductors are developed here, the manufacturing opportunity will become bigger.

“India is a very very important market and I am saying obviously because of the domestic potential which we have… but I also think the role that India could play for the world for Signify is becoming far more important,” Joshi told PTI.

Asked if Signify is looking as a manufacturing base for other global markets, he said, “Over a period of time, I would want to see that India also starts playing a much bigger role in manufacturing.”

“Now with the China Plus One thinking, we are also evaluating as to what role can India play for the world in terms of manufacturing,” he said.

The ecosystem required for electronics in the next 6-7 years is going to be far more developed. Presently, India does not have an ecosystem for crucial components such as semiconductors.

“But now, that ecosystem is going to develop and I think there is a very serious attempt by the government and private players and make the electronics ecosystem much better,” he said, adding, “and once that happens, I think the role of manufacturing becomes much bigger”.

“The (R&D) transformation is happening, which I see in the next 5-7 years,” Joshi said.

According to Joshi, the PLI scheme by the Indian government for LED light manufacturing was one of the most successful schemes in the last couple of years.

“A lot of companies, including us, have used PLI to have more capital investment being put in,” he said, adding that the industry is eagerly looking for the second tranche of the scheme, which may be announced in the upcoming Budget.

Signify has two R&D facilities in India — Noida and Pune — an innovation lab in Bengaluru, and a manufacturing plant in Vadodara.

Brands such as Ecolink, which was developed in India for the affordable segment, have a presence in more than 15 countries. Signify exports to around 15 markets from India, he said.

About the Indian lighting industry, Joshi, a former president of Elcoma — an association of lighting products manufacturers — said it is moving towards connected lighting, which is expected to double in the next three years.

Currently, smart connected lighting are less than 10 per cent of the industry, while in the professional segment, it is higher around 20 per cent, Joshi said.

In the Indian lighting industry, the transformation to LED from CFL bulbs is almost complete and consumers are upgrading to smart connected lighting.

It is also seeing a good volume growth on the consumer part of the business as technology becomes cheaper and LED chips are getting far more efficient.

“Now, the next stage of lighting that we are going to experience now, whether it is in the professional part as offices hospitality, healthcare or home, consumers are now going to move to something, which is much differentiated, better lighting, connected lighting, that’s what we are seeing,” he said.

Signify, a world leader in lighting, aspires to be net-zero by 2040 globally and it is ahead in the Indian market on the target, he said.

“India has moved very well… our LED transformation in India happened with a lot of government initiatives,” Joshi said, adding that this transition is helping India a lot in consumption of energy.

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