JCB’s Next Challenge? Stay on Top of the Indian Exploration and Construction Markets

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As part of its consolidation process, JCB has announced the opening of a plant in November this year in Jaipur in Rajasthan, India. The new, US $100 million factory complex actually is 2 factories on a 114-acre site; all part of JCB’s plan to hold on to its number one position in India.

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The facility is its third manufacturing site in the country. India is now the manufacturer’s largest market by sales. In 2012-13, JCB India’s operations revenue was approximately $957 million (Rs 5862 crore), about a fifth of the group’s total revenues. But the economic slowdown is bound to hit the company’s bottom lines, say some analysts here. A Live Mint report claimed, for example, that recently, because of the slowdown, JCB was forced to shut its assembly lines for 10 days in a month.

But as the year nears an end, JCB India is gearing up for expansion. In addition to the new factory, the Indian operations also recently added 12 new products at one go – from forklifts to excavators to backhoe loaders, adding to its comprehensive, and rather impressive, lineup of construction and logistics equipment.

JCB’s foray into India was a joint venture way back in 1979, a personal project of then-chairman Lord Anthony Bamford, and son of the company’s founder Joseph Cyril Bamford, whose initials provide the company its name.

In 2003, it broke out on its own, and since then has been moving from strength to strength, leaving behind competitors in India such as the US-based Caterpillar and Hitachi of Japan. Now, it is said, 3 out of every 4 pieces of construction equipment sold in India are those produced by JCB.

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