Prabhjot Singh Jandu is the third generation of Jandus! His grandfather Baldev Singh Jandu set up his maiden venture Jandu Engineering Works from humble beginnings in 1972, operating from a 100 square foot rented premises with just one lathe machine that he was operating himself and grew it to become the most prominent supplier of coating and laminating plants in India. His son Gurdev Singh later joined him in business to help his father to further the growth. Their story written by the author in 2013 and also carried by leading print magazine Printweek India, is already there on the blog https://harveersahni.blogspot.com/2013/01/baldev-singh-jandujandu-coaters-create.html This was at a time when his grandson Prabhjot was still in school. With time, it was felt that there is a need to upgrade equipment in terms of technology and automation, together with expanding the business in terms of size, planning, service and administration. When Prabhjot finished his studies, he joined the enterprise and spent a year or so in training before starting to take decisions, it was like a dose of fresh youthful energy in the company. He is the 3rd generation Jandu to be inducted who is now initiating a complete makeover!
Prabhjot Singh Jandu completed his education with a B.Tech. Mechanical engineering from Amity University followed by business training at the same institution. As a part of that training, he was sent to Adelphi University New York for six months and then to Birkbeck, University of London, England for another six months. On return in 2020, at the young age of 22 years, he joined the family enterprise Jandu Engineering Works and was handed over the responsibility of uplifting the company branding and to take up marketing aggressively. Once he got settled, in order to make component inputs consistent to standard specifications, he moved on to look after purchasing and improving infrastructure to build plants with improved performance of their coating and laminating equipment.
He is now taking it upon himself to create plants that were not only great in terms of aesthetics but also excelled in running at higher speeds with increased automation. Prabhjot endeavors to gradually move away from the basic market that they were catering to and transform his company to cater to the higher end of customers for coating and laminating plants that can make specialty coatings and curing with precision under controlled conditions. He plans to launch coaters for new and innovative products. To make their plants more sustainable they have managed to design and supply equipment that has reduced wastages, with lower manpower and less dependence on operators. For better after sales service, he is introducing remote access so that production downtime of customers is substantially reduced. They now have the capability to access the plant at customer’s premises through internet and diagnose the problem and provide solutions. This has helped them with providing service to their export customers as when they provide internet connectivity, the Jandu service team can troubleshoot and support. They are already implementing real time data access from the plant in production for better and more accurate coatings. Servo drives with software support from Siemens are incorporated for demanding customers. Better tension controls provide uniformity of coatings and smoother run ability. As for providing inline inspection and precision control for silicone coatings starting at 0.30 GSM (gram per square meter) they are ready with the technology but await the right customer who will invest in such a high-end system for their silicone coater. Jandu Engineering Works under Prabhjot’s guidance have started to follow industry 4.0 guidelines.
Earlier, to increase their outreach in the industry, almost all business came to them by reference from existing customers or friends. Prabhjot is making changes and has indulged in extensive marketing and brand promotion. Jandu’s emails are not plain text now and have transformed to well-designed ones and are informative. Their website is up there on the first page when a prospective customer is looking for coaters and laminators. They regularly exhibit at label and packaging exhibitions; in fact, their last international presence was at Labelexpo Europe 2023 in Brussels where it was seen, all three generations manning the booth.
Jandu’s initial growth in the label industry was due to the earliest label printing press that they produced, narrow web CI flexo, but they have now found immense success in building coaters and laminators for the self-adhesive label and other converting industries. Their label printing press manufacturing business is now a very small part of their operations, they are in the process of contemplating either to improve and upgrade their presses or just keep concentrating on coating equipment. There present range has expanded to offer multiple types of converting equipment besides label presses which include coating and laminating machines for; silicone coating and self-adhesive labelstock, specialized coated products, thermal paper, sublimation paper, solar coatings, medical tape coatings, Barrier coatings, PLA coatings, pattern coatings and car wrapping, etc. They also have strong demand for slitting machines as it is necessary equipment for the coating and laminating lines. With experience, Jandu Engineering Works can help new entrants in the coating industry for specialized products with technology, sourcing and other details. They keep acquiring the latest information from suppliers of chemicals and specialized coatings in contact with them who are promoting their technical coatings and advise the processes to be followed. Jandu believes in sharing information with their existing customers.
Prabhjot is happy that the company has grown 60% to 70% since his joining. When he joined their silicone coating line was running at 250 meters per minute and adhesive coating at 100 meters per minute. Now after upgradation the silicone coating runs at 350 meters per minute and after more design changes it is expected to increase to 500 meters per minute and adhesive coating can now run at 180 meters per minute with much improved drying system. Proudly he says, “their earlier customers used to look for basic machines at low prices and now after I explain to them the benefits of the newer technological changes in our equipment, they are ready to invest in the expensive advanced versions of our equipment.” Ninety percent of their customers repeat their orders as proof of their acceptability. Their penetration into the market segment they operate in is more than 80%. While the number of coaters being sold now may be a little less but in terms of value it is much more, almost doubling their turnover because of the sale of advanced equipment to a higher market segment.
Prabhjot is ambitious and with active mentoring and support from his grandfather Baldev Singh Jandu and father Gurdev Singh, he wants to grow the company at a faster pace and endeavors’ a 50% growth in revenue per year. When he joined the company in 2020 Jandu Engineering Works was already operating from a 25000 square feet shopfloor, which has now expanded 60,000 square feet despite the pandemic slowdown. The Jandu family is now looking for about 3 to 4 acres of land for further expansion. The total workforce employed when Prabhjot joined was 70 and has now increased to 120 people. In the last 3 years they have sold around 40 coating lines up to 2-meter width for various applications employing diverse coating methods like air knife coating, 5 roll silicone coating, bar coating, gravure, adhesive coating, etc. These lines have the capability to coat at a speed up to 350 meters per minute. Jandu coaters have been exported to 17 countries so far.
Written by Harveer Sahni Chairman Weldon Celloplast New Delhi January 2024
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