Winfried Kretschmann, the minister-president of the German state of Baden-Württemberg, today visited the Bosch plant in Pune, in the Indian state of Maharashtra with a delegation counting more than a hundred members. The minister-president’s trip was prompted by the sister agreement between the states of Maharashtra and Baden-Württemberg, each of which are among the economically strongest in their respective countries. At the reception in Pune, Winfried Kretschmann said: “Smart cities, smart mobility, and innovative solutions for engineering and automobile production are the focus of our trip. And this is why I am especially pleased that we are beginning our trip here in Pune at Bosch – a company that is ensuring that cities and mobility systems worldwide become smart.”
For the automotive industry, the Pune region has gained considerably in importance in recent years. Bosch has been in Pune since 1997. Its plant there currently comprises an engineering center and two manufacturing facilities, and employs some 1,000 associates. At the Bosch plant, the German delegation gained some insights into the development and production of automotive safety systems, above all the ABS antilock braking system, the ESP electronic stability program, and hydraulic actuation products.
Bosch well equipped for increasing demand for safety systems
In recent years, government regulations and a growing focus on safety in India have led to increasing local demand for vehicles equipped with safety systems such as ABS. Currently, just under 50 percent of vehicles in India are equipped with ABS. In light of these developments, the Bosch Group has constantly extended the capacity of its Pune plant. “Over the past nine years, we have invested more than 55 million euros in the plant in Pune. The further development of the local production is indispensable for our growth in this segment,” said Soumitra Bhattacharya, the new president of Bosch India, during Minister-President Kretschmann’s visit.
More safety on India’s roads
India’s rapidly growing population means that it faces considerable road-traffic challenges. With technologies such as ABS and ESP, the Bosch Group has been helping improve road safety for many years. Speaking in Pune, the minister-president paid tribute to this: “Bosch has already contributed significantly to the development of technologies that bring us closer to the vision of emissions-free and automated cars as part of a future digitally connected mobility system. This means that infrastructure will be better used, traffic jams avoided, and multimodal transportation improved. Moreover, the number of traffic victims will decrease drastically, and energy consumption and pollution will be reduced.”
From April 2018, for example, India will be mandating ABS for motorcycles with more than 125 cc displacement. For the Pune plant, and especially for the plant in Chakan, also in Maharashtra state, this is good news. ABS is also one of the most important products of this location. The machinery needed to manufacture the motorcycle variant of this product will be arriving from Germany in the next few months. Even today, the Chakan plant is a global benchmark for ABS production. As part of the Bosch Group’s international manufacturing network, the plant relies on the support of the MES manufacturing execution system, an Industry 4.0 solution that ensures practically error-free production. The new government regulations promise an optimistic future for the plant. Its senior general manager, Kartikeya Joshi, said: “We expect demand for motorcycle ABS in India to increase nearly seven-fold by 2020.”
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 390,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2016). According to preliminary figures, the company generated sales of 73.1 billion euros in 2016. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. As a leading IoT company, Bosch offers innovative solutions for smart homes, smart cities, connected mobility, and connected industry. It uses its expertise in sensor technology, software, and services, as well as its own IoT cloud, to offer its customers connected, cross-domain solutions from a single source. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to create solutions for a connected life, and to improve quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.” The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 450 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing, engineering, and sales network covers nearly every country in the world. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. At 120 locations across the globe, Bosch employs 59,000 associates in research and development.
The company was set up in Stuttgart in 1886 by Robert Bosch (1861-1942) as “Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering.” The special ownership structure of Robert Bosch GmbH guarantees the entrepreneurial freedom of the Bosch Group, making it possible for the company to plan over the long term and to undertake significant up-front investments in the safeguarding of its future. Ninety-two percent of the share capital of Robert Bosch GmbH is held by Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH, a charitable foundation. The majority of voting rights are held by Robert Bosch Industrietreuhand KG, an industrial trust. The entrepreneurial ownership functions are carried out by the trust. The remaining shares are held by the Bosch family and by Robert Bosch GmbH.