How Metravi is helping the Indian manufacturing sector to raise the quality bar

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Vikram Bhansali MD Metravi Instruments - Interview in IPF September 2021 issue

How Metravi is helping the Indian manufacturing sector to raise the quality bar

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The government’s push to boost manufacturing in India accompanied by relative increase in exports is forcing companies to focus on production of quality products. This, in turn, is leading to rise in demand for instrumentation. With more than 50 years of experience in the field of test & measuring equipment, Metravi offers solutions for everything – from IoT enabled meters to customised solutions. In this interview, Vikram Bhansali, MD, Metravi Instruments, explains.

Kindly brief us about Metravi. How is Metravi serving the manufacturing sector in India?

Metravi offers a complete bouquet of hi-tech, reliable, quality instruments. Innovation is our forte and we also combine instrumentation needs into product packages, so that Engineers can carry and use single instruments instead of multiple. We are dedicated to offer feature-driven instrumentation of highest quality, yet within reach of every strata of users.

Having spent more than 50 years selling in the field of testing & measuring equipment, we have been witness to the phenomenon of constant change. From the days of thermometers to thermocouples to IR measurements. However, leading change is another high in itself – a change that makes a significant contribution to the industry.

There is cut-throat competition in every business today. It is only the best that survive…those who embrace change. There is immense pressure on manufacturing to reduce costs and improve efficiency & productivity and the advancement in Maintenance practices have been key drivers from the manufacturing end.
We have seen how maintenance practices have changed – changed to extract the maximum out of the machines – from corrective to preventive to predictive & condition based monitoring.

Having interacted with manufacturers & traders from across the world, we always felt that Indians were denied the latest in technology. We knew of non-intrusive measurement & monitoring that were completely risk-free. These were either unavailable or were priced so exorbitantly, only a select few could afford. There was a huge need gap of technologically advanced equipment with the affordability & reliability that Indians are used to.
We have been taking on the challenge to fill this gap since the launch of our own brands.

A lot of low-cost local instruments are available in the market but these often compromise on quality and accuracy. Hence, Metravi has started providing highly-accurate instruments along with setting primary standards against which the customers can test and measure our instruments to ensure their accuracy.

How is the market for test & measurement (T&M) equipment? Which end-user industries are driving the demand for T&M equipment?

Growth is being observed across industries and the consequent need and increase in demand for quality instrumentation. With the Government of India’s push across every sector for adopting technology, digitalisation and making processes more efficient and viable, the manufacturing industry has started down the boom path. There is growth everywhere.

The huge boost to innovation and modernisation in sectors like Railways and Defence have increased the demand for innovative, quality solutions for their instrumentation needs. The growing infrastructure needs have empowered the iron and steel and cement industries for increasing production. All this increase in manufacturing is leading to ever-increasing demand for power and electricity, affecting both production and transmission sectors. The change and demand to renewable energy and Smart Cities are also causing the Manufacturing Industry to reinvent and revolutionise towards Industry 4.0. Downtimes have to be abolished, maintenance has to be predictive and condition monitoring has become of utmost importance.

All of the above means that machines and manufacturing processes have to be working with the highest efficiency and productivity. Hence, instrumentation requirements are growing daily for high-quality, innovative and high-precision instruments.
Every industry is playing catch-up with all the advancements that the GoI is pushing. There is no dearth of demand and all the industries are on the lookout for the best instrumentation solutions for their respective applications.

What does Metravi bring to the table for its customers?

We started with our own brand of products to offer state-of-art-technology at realistic pricing. We wanted and continue to provide complete instrumentation solutions for all the needs of the various industries and hence have become a ONE-STOP-SHOP for all kinds of instruments. To cater to all kinds of customers, we have a wide range of quality & high-precision products across all testing categories. There is one for everyone.

We back our product offerings with fast deliveries, efficient repair times and quick and robust after-sales assistance for application & usage support including training. We share product unpacking and usage videos along with offering on call explanations as well as hands-on / onsite training as add on services.

We also offer and have successfully customised instrumentation solutions for applications across public as well as private industries.

How did Metravi respond when the market was struck with Covid 19 pandemic? What kind of products did you launch during this period?

We have been stocking and selling non-contact infrared forehead thermometers for years now.
The COVID-19 situation definitely created and pushed demand for non-contact diagnostic equipment, to help prevent the spread of the pandemic.

The benefit derived from the increased demand and sales is that we have been able to introduce new, innovative, next-gen test and measuring equipment, which is specific to pandemic testing, including but not limited to:
Specially-calibrated thermal imagers for human body screening
High-precision forehead infrared thermometers
Palm and forehead infrared thermometer which can be integrated with access control systems
An AI controlled, non-contact, infrared, biometric and temperature monitoring device which includes access monitoring as well as attendance integrations
Rapid-testing Kits for COVID-19 and Mass Testing Equipment for RTPCR testing

India is aiming to become a $5 trillion economy. How important is the quality in this transition to $5 trillion? Also, how will this transition drive demand for T&M equipment?

To work towards the $5 trillion economy, all need to gear up and robust work on infrastructure is required by all industries. We need to also start exporting high-quality products to build up the economy further and faster.

Low-cost, low-quality products might sell but will not last long. Hence, for repeatability and volumes for domestic as well as export consumption, high-quality production and products are required, for which every industry will require high-precision and quality test and measuring instruments. Accuracy and repeatability will set the required benchmarks and it is the only way to go for supporting the rise and growth across industries, if we want to reach the mark.

This transition will automatically and obviously drive an ever-increasing demand for T&M equipment and instruments.

Automation, IoT and Industry 4.0 are changing the face of manufacturing. How is Metravi adopting these changes?

With Industry 4.0, human involvement is on the decrease and computers make decisions as they are connected and can communicate with each other. A combination of Internet of Things, Internet of Systems and Industry 4.0 is making and will make the Smart Factory a reality.

Consequently, the support from smart machines will be on the increase as they get access to more data and will result in a jump in efficiencies & productivities. Ultimately, the network of these smart machines will create and share the information that will result in the true power of Industry 4.0.
Instrumentation in this scenario will become highly useful and important with the likes of smart instruments which will connect to computers and smartphones for instant data, reports and analytics. High quality instruments would be required to work at higher frequencies with ability to collect, collate and analyse big volumes of data.

The essence of Industry 4.0 is Automation and data exchange-driven manufacturing technologies and processes that are encapsulated in Cyber-Physical Systems(CSP), Internet of Things (IoT), Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT), Cloud Connectivity and computing, cognitive computing and artificial intelligence.

What are the emerging trends in T&M equipment industry ?

Consumers are becoming aware and conscious of the fact that quality is more valuable than price when it comes to T&M instruments. India being a very price sensitive market, the trends and purchase habits have been always focused on the price while quality, longevity and accuracy took a back seat. However, this is now changing.
The consumers are becoming more and more aware of the fact that they might be saving pennies while buying cheap T&M instruments but in the long run they are losing out on pounds, as these cheap instruments are unable to deliver on accuracy or quality, which is direly required.

This trend is finally a win-win for both the consumers as well as the T&M industry, as the customers are getting better quality and accuracy and the industry is able to move beyond the rat race of being able to manufacture and supply the cheapest possible instrument. Rather the focus now is on quality and accuracy.

With the growing trend towards Industry 4.0, Smart Cities, Renewable Energy and more environmentally conscious consumers, there is a clear need for growth, across industries, for more efficient production, power production and transmission, as well as automated monitoring and consumption systems.
With this comes a need for efficient, precise and high accuracy instrumentation. We are in a prime position to be able to fulfil these needs with our smart and reliable instruments. So, we forsee unlimited growing and sustainable opportunities.

What are Metravi’s growth plans for the future?

We already have instruments that are in line with current requirements and we are also actively working on next-gen instruments so that they are smart and relevant to Industry 4.0 ready right from the box.

We have instruments and solutions for everything, from IoT enabled meters to customized solutions (that we have done for customers who want data directly from their clamp meters/multimeters right into their cloud driven system). We also have a large number of App-connected instruments and are adding to the kitty regularly.

As always, we have been focusing on the following issues as regards Test & Measurement, and we will continue towards our efforts for the same in the coming years, indirectly driving growth for ourselves and the industry overall:

Often customers are unaware as well as unsure about which instrument or specification would serve their measurement needs – we provide consultation and advice as per measurement or industry needs before offering them any product from our range.
Most of the users are oblivious that certain instruments are already available for their specific needs – we have been trying and proactively try to educate and propagate our offerings and solutions – for every measurement need.
Users are slowly and steadily becoming aware that such hi-quality and reliable, innovative instruments are available at such realistic pricing. The market has been used to global brands selling at three times our prices, but now there is growing awareness that quality and reliability does not have to always come at a price. We have driven and actively drive this knowledge amongst the Engineers and users of our products.

Metravi / Arun Enterprises is one our oldest associates of IPF, Please describe our association over the years?

IPF has been a media leader for the Engineering and Manufacturing Industry and a reliable media partner since ages. It has helped us drive a lot of awareness regarding all our instrumentation products and solutions amongst the wide audience base that they have. Our close association with IPF over the years has strengthened our brand value and trust.

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