Production starts at Kobelco's Indian excavator factory

By Chris Sleight18 April 2011

Kobelco has held an opening ceremony at its new excavator plant in Sri City, Andhra Pradesh, India to mark the start of production. The event was attended by 230 guests including local politicians and Kobelco's senior management.

The plant, which is some 75 km north of Chennai, has the capacity to manufacture 1200 excavators per year - equivalent to about 10% of the Indian market for such machines. The factory will employ 149 people this year - 87 in production and 62 in sales and administration.

Shigeto Kotani, president & CEO of Kobelco Construction Machinery said, "Our high quality machines are made to the same exacting standards in Japan. They will undoubtedly contribute to improving the infrastructure of this great country."

He continued, "India is one of the fastest growing countries in the world and I believe it will keep growing for 30 to 40 years to come. The opening of this factory marks Kobelco's first major step in India. We will continue to move forward as we make our presence grows throughout the country."

The new was started up in January, with the first machines being made there on display at February's bC India exhibition, Kobelco has since moved on to start full production at Sri City. Production will focus on 20 tonne class excavators.

Kobleco says India is close to becoming the second largest excavator market in Asia after China, with sales of over 11000 units last year coming close to the demand seen in Japan. However, the Indian excavator market is poised to overtake Japan, with demand forecast to rise to 25000 excavators per year in 2015.

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