SME Times News Bureau | 23 Feb, 2019
Besides unavailability of finance, the Indian Small and Medium
Enterprise (SME) sector is facing numerous challenges, such as lack of infrastructure, sustainability, insufficient
funds, limited access to resources as well as marketing channels and heavy
competition from large entities, said Ankit Tayal, Co-Founder, Step
Industries Pvt. Ltd.
of the interview …
Please tell our readers about Step Industries and its entrepreneurial
Ankit Tayal: The entrepreneurial journey of our company started in the year 2011,
when I in partnership with my uncle Mr. Sunil Tayal founded Step Industries
Pvt. Ltd. with a vision to become the best cable and wire manufacturing
In a Short Span of 8 years, ‘Step’ has witnessed immense growth and
has become one the leading Cable & Wire manufacturing company in India with
a strong presence in over 150 cities of the northern and southern states of the
country. The company has acquired the reputation of being one of the fastest
growing company in the cable & wire manufacturing industry through constant
innovation and upholding high standards of quality and services.
In addition to cable manufacturing, Step Industries also specializes
in EPC (Engineering Project Construction) contracts and is a major contributor
in many central & state electrification schemes like ‘Saubhagya Yojna’,
IPDS (Integrated Power Development Scheme), R-APDRP etc.
Step Industries now has a workforce of over 1000 + employees and is
expecting to achieve a turnover of over Rs 300 crs by the end of FYI 2018-19.
What products/services do you offer? What is your competitive edge?
Ankit Tayal: Apart from being cable and wire manufacturing company, we are also a
leader in EPC (Engineering, Procurement, Construction) projects and currently
playing an important role in fulfilling governments dream of providing
electricity to every household, by being a major contributor in many central
& state electrification schemes like 'Saubhagya Yojna', IPDS (Integrated Power
Development Scheme), R-APDRP etc.
If we talk about the makes 'Step' a better brand than the others,
then I would say that the use of new age technology in manufacturing, and our
focus on continual improvement in customer centricity by providing the best rated
products and services that surpass the expectations of our customers in terms
of value, quality, promptness and reliability gives Step industries an edge
over other available brands in the market.
What are the major challenges your industry is facing currently?
Ankit Tayal: Although the industry is witnessed a significant growth every year,
one of the biggest challenges faced by the industry is volatility in raw
material prices. Any upward movements in the prices of raw material like steel,
zinc, copper, and aluminium have an adverse effect on the profit margins.
In addition, as the wire and cable industry is dependent on imports
from China, the UAE, Russia, and Japan, thus exchange rate variations highly
affects the industry. Further, delay in the execution of projects due to the
requirement of multiple clearances and approvals, and the shortage of manpower,
this too poses a major impediment to the growth of the industry.
Lately, the industry is also seen grappling with the challenge
pertaining to lack of fair level playing field in the market. In many of the
instances, it is seen that the tenders released by utilities have specific
pre-qualification condition that hampers the wider participation by the
domestic industry. Also, being a large section of the industry still
unorganized, there is lack of quality product offerings by these players, due
to non- compliance with the product guidelines.
What according to you are the main hurdles to the growth of the
Indian SME sector?
Ankit Tayal: Despite being one the major contributor to the growth of the country,
SME sector in India is facing numerous challenges like lack of infrastructure,
sustainability, insufficient funds, limited access to resources as well as
marketing channels and heavy competition from large entities, small enterprises
often fail to meet their true potential.
Another major challenge faced by Indian SME’s is unavailability of
finance. With a drastic decline in public sector banks’ (PSB) share in lending
to the MSME sector, small businesses often fail to get loans on time which
takes away their opportunity to expand.
Skill development is key to survival today. What SMEs should do in
this regard? What your company does?
Skill development is definitely important, particularly in
manufacturing industry where skill level of the employee directly affects the
output of the business. SME’s should focus on improving the skill level of the
employees with the help of regular training programs and workshops.
We understand the importance of skill development and that’s why we
arrange training programs like, Technical skills development, Personality
development, Soft skills development, Negotiation skills, Sales management,
etc. on a time to time basis to upgrade the skill and efficiency level of our
Please tell us about your future plans.
Ankit Tayal: 'Step' has a vision to become the best cables and wires manufacturers
in India and establish a strong global presence. We also aim to become a major
player in the EPC projects by grabbing more govt. run electrification projects.
We also aim to expand further in next couple of years and triple our
turnover to more than Rs 1000 crore by 2020. Also, soon the company will be
expanding its manufacturing capacity by opening a new unit to meet the rapidly