Utkarsh Bansal: A Versatile Creative Leader

Utkarsh Bansal | Insights Success

Utkarsh Bansal is the Director of Utkarsh India Limited which is a label in the infrastructure domain.  Constant evolution and innovation are the pillars of their sustainability in the ever-growing, competitive Indian infrastructure sector.
In an interview with Insights Success, Utkarsh gave some insightful answers highlighting the influences made by him and the company to take manufacturing industry to next level.

  1. Brief us about you and yourentrepreneur journey since the beginning of your career.

I have been working with Utkarsh India since the past 3.5 years. I joined the business immediately after my undergraduate studies in Industrial Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 2015.Prior to which had a short stint with Sony Entertainment Corporation America, in their California office, working with them on supply chain and operations management. The experience at Sony helped me a lot since it gave me an idea of corporate culture and various things that go with it. Also during my undergraduate studies, I had brief stints with a few startups across tech and retail sectors, which allowed me to experience the all-around dynamics of running an organization. With Utkarsh I started off with roles in marketing, building our nascent export division, rebranding of Utkarsh India for the PVC division, operations management etc.  Post my Masters in Business from the Indian School of Business; I took on an active role as a director of the company. Here my efforts have largely been focused on moving the company from a steel pipes manufacturer to an manufacturer of Engineering products for the infrastructural industry, building a sustainable growth model which will put us on the map as well as allow us to sustain the company for years to come, building long term alliances with suppliers and customers alike, as well as increasing operational efficiency of the company across various spheres.

  1. How do you describe yourself in one/two word? Who has been your guide, source of inspiration, support?

I truly believe myself to be Creative – Creativity across various spheres like quick solutions, coming up with modern marketing techniques, approach to the market and consumer behavior, manpower management skills etc.
My Guide and source of support and inspiration has been my father, Mr. Sunil Bansal who is the CMD of Utkarsh India Limited. He has managed to build Utkarsh India from scratch into the enterprise it is today (doing a revenue of more than 1200 crores) in less than 15 years. Moreover he has been able to build an organization with high levels of professionalism, ethicality and corporate governance. Also the way he treats his employees as family is a major learning for me to take the company forward.

  1. What do you like most about your job? State us about your passions, mission, and goals. What acts as a motivation tool for you

Fortunately, I am a part of a company, which already has all major operational, marketing, financial issues taken care of and specific people responsible for them. My task is to help the company grow, infuse new ideas, new policies, new practices, so that we can make the company more efficient, more sustainable, more profitable and most importantly larger and more diverse than it currently is.
My goal is to make Utkarsh India an INR 5000 cr. Revenue generating enterprise in the next 5 years making it a market leader. Mission is to make Utkarsh India a sustainable organization which can sustain this growth for years to come and be a company that pans across generations. Moreover, our mission is to become a brand that is the go to choice for all infrastructural companies when it comes to engineering goods and is synonymous with quality and reliability so that we can become the backbone of infrastructure in our country.

  1. Kindly describe in brief about your company and its services/products.

Since inception in 1970, we have grown to become one of the leaders in the galvanized steel and PVC segments with an annual turnover of more than INR 650 crore. Our two state-of-the-art manufacturing units-Jangalpur, Howrah and Gurap, Hooghly, have helped us to set benchmarks in the MS ERW Black and GI Pipes sector for over 47 years. With the market demands switched to transmission, roads, power, water and railways sectors. We moved in to keep up with ever changing infrastructure demands.
Consistency, reliability and experience have helped us constantly in progress. We brought in improved and modern techniques to increase efficiency, upping our productivity many fold. We have always ensured timely delivery without compromising on the safety of our employee.
We serve the following needs of infrastructure Industry.

  • Road safety and Lighting needs for national and state highway projects
  • Power Transmission and Railways Electrification Industry
  • Water Transportation Industry
    Plumbing and Building Projects
  • Other Structural Needs across industries
  1. Share your experience and brief us about the tactics and strategies to win people’s trust.

I think the best strategy to win people’s trust is to practice what you preach and to lead from the front. If people see a leader who is willing to take on any challenge that might come their way and moreover (even if I am unaware of the right answer) never hesitant to express opinions and actually having a positive and considerable contribution to the target of the company, they automatically trust in you. Moreover, it is important to follow what you preach in the sense that we should follow the same set of ideals and rules as we set. Also, involving people in decision making and taking their opinions also helps them trust in you and your thought process.
6. State us your major achievements and your company’s achievements under your leadership.

  • Winning WIRC’s Best Brand Award amidst Industry stalwarts.Company achieved 35% growth in topline in 17-18 and expected 40% growth in topline in 18-19.
  • More than 50% growth in bottom line in both years
  • Became the highest supplier of railway electrification structures to the Indian Railways as acknowledged by CORE
  • Became the highest manufacturer of poles (both octagonal and steel tubular poles) in India.
  • Top 10 manufacturing firms awards
  • Expanded our dealer base by 1.5X

7. State us about the most memorable and remarkable moments of your life.

  • Closing my first deal
  • First time I represented Utkarsh India
  • First time I heard  that Utkarsh being recognized for the products it makes by a layman, meaning the brand been made.
  • Our annual meet where we facilitated more than 30 employees who have been with us for more than 20 years and we realized the loyalty and support we have
  • Winning the Best Brand award.
  1. What drives you to become an entrepreneur? Kindly highlight your achievements. Please mention your awards and accreditations, which are notable to you

An ability to make a difference in the industry that I am in is the main drive. Being an entrepreneur is of no use if we do not give utmost importance to our employees. He needs to make a name for himself and stand apart from competitions. A healthy company is the best company with utmost efficient employees

  1. Kindly tell us about the challenges you took and the risk associated with it and how did you overcome them?

The greatest challenge we have overtaken is the drive to expand into 7 different product verticals within a span of a couple of years and establishing a brand name and increasing quantities rapidly year after year. We are increasing capacity by almost 50% every year, being bullish on market trends in various markets and riding on that to be able to increase quantities. This is a great risk for us as we are expanding rapidly. Moreover considering that our sustainability is our long term goal this is a mammoth challenge.

  1. Share your point of view on the current scenario of the industry and its future.

Infra is strong right now. Manufacturing and Infrastructure as sectors has become the highest job creator in the market. Investors too are keen to invest in this sector as the former glory is being restored rapidly. Utkarsh is one of the main players to accelerate West Bengal’s Industrial drive.

  1. What would you advise to the budding entrepreneurs?

Keep your goal clear and do not go a day without working on the same. Be brave to take risk and follow your gut. Tackle your mistakes with a smile and do not fear to dream big.

  1. Please tell us about your future business plans.

Becoming market leaders in all 7 verticals that we are into. Achieving 5000 crores in the next five years and growing more and more. Getting into manufacturing of other Infrastructural products as well. Building a brand and creating a name in the Industry. Creating a path for PAN India presence. Touching a 10000 figure dealer reach.

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