V Gokul Das , MD

HRS Process Systems offers a sustainable, innovative and energy-efficient range of processing applications across a diverse spectrum of industries. Mr V Gokul Das, Chairman and Managing Director, HRS Process Systems Ltd. in an interview with Explore Pharma talks about the company’s key milestone, growth strategies, market trends and challenges.

Q. HRS being one of the leading providers of heat transfer solutions & has a significant market share for products, how did HRS India manage this bounteous growth?

Ans:    HRS has been at the forefront of innovative thermal processing solutions and with the introduction of Ecoflux*corrugated tube technology, we have been able to make a positive impact in this highly competitive market. We believe “Once a customer, customer for life” and thus, our approach in this segment was different from the other players. We went out of the way to understand customer requirements, including the need for flexibility of operations and challenges with utilities. We ensured that our heat exchangers gave the best performance under varying process conditions. We also educated the customers on heat exchanger design which would help them save on operation and maintenance cost. This is very important for the end-user segment especially in chemical, pharmaceutical, agrochemical and similar process industries where the customer depends on the technology supplier to provide cost-effective solution for their requirement. The success of our approach is our loyal customer base with repeat business from Customers who have been with us since inception and responsible for this high growth.

Q.  What is the overall outlook for HRS India & brief us about HRS’s global & domestic presence?

Ans:    HRS India has always charted a high growth path and followed up diligently on its plan to achieve the goals. The current financial year has been full of challenges.  However, Customer support with business from our key segments of pharmaceutical, agro chem, chemical and food industry have enabled our business to not only sustain but also have decent growth. We believe going forward, the market is poised to improve and have an upward swing by mid-2021. We are getting geared-up for targeting this demand in the market and expect our customers to invest and grow.

HRS India caters to all regions in our country and all process and food industry requirement. We are a global sourcing location for the group companies and thus are able to cater to global demand. We have direct responsibility for the South East Asian market part of West Asia, Africa and Australia-New Zealand. We have been very successful in the Malaysian and Indonesian oil processing segment including oleo-chemicals and other chemical processing segments. We have also supplied units to other global locations and continue to expand our reach.

Q. What are the market opportunities for HRS products in India? How do you plan to Position these products?

Ans:    HRS is an ISO 9001 company with ASME ‘U’ certification. With our technology expertise and suitably accredited manufacturing facility, we are able to offer all types of heat exchangers to Indian and global markets. Our energy-efficient range of heat exchangers are used across a host of industries, viz., chemical and agrochemical processing, pharmaceuticals, petrochemical, fertilizer, edible oil, snack food, fruit and beverages processing, dairy, neutraceuticals, prepared food, etc. Our products are required for greenfield, brownfield or expansion projects and for replacement requirements. Thus there is tremendous potential for our products and services. We design and engineer heat exchangers for each of these segments, so that customer can derive the maximum benefit of efficient energy utilisation and better product quality.

We are operating from Pune with a regional office in the country to have a closed connection with our customers. For the South-East Asian market, we have a group company in Malaysia.  We directly market in the neighbouring Asian countries. In India alone, we have an installed base of over 20,000 heat exchangers/heat exchanger based systems for various products, processes and industry segment.  We have a heat transfer solution for all applications. With our strong financials and product references, we are able to give confidence to customers and win orders.

Q. What is your marketing strategy for the Indian market?

Ans:  Indian market is an educated, cost and energy conscious market for a product like a heat exchanger which has a huge impact on the energy cost and productivity of the process. Thus we have to ensure that customer understands how our product can satisfy their needs and enable their process. Over the years we have built a huge client base that is loyal to HRS and our brand of Ecoflux*heat exchangers. Our approach has been direct to the customer/end-user with an aim to understand their requirement and provide them with the right product and solution for their application. Each and every heat exchanger is tailor-made for that application/process and thus we are able to fulfil customers’ demand and ensure the stable working of their process plant.

Q. Can you please elucidate the contribution of R&D to the Success of HRS India products?

Ans:    HRS has always invested in R&D to build products that can satisfy various thermal processing requirement of the customer. We have an R&D centre at Murcia, Spain where we develop equipment that can provide a solution for customer requirements. Our Ecoflux*corrugated tube heat exchanger has developed in this centre over 3 decades ago. There have been enhancements in corrugation technology over the years to help overcome challenging process requirement in various industries.

We have developed a unique reciprocating scraped surface heat exchanger aptly named UNICUS®. This is a “non-fouling” heat exchanger that has proved successful in various applications in the chemical process, pharmaceutical and the food industry.

We have recently developed a rotary scrapped surface heat exchanger ‘ROTEX’ for Thermal treatment of heat sensitive products including products for hygienic use.

In order to enable the processing of diced fruits and vegetables in our heat exchangers, we developed the HRS piston pump which has been a runaway success. This product has transformed the way fruits and vegetable can be processed including enabling the transfer of ready to eat food and cooking of various pulses and rice.

Application engineering and innovative product development are key to our R&D efforts. HRS initiatives are based on customer feedback regarding the requirement of solution for applications globally. Indian companies are very keen to adopt these technologies and solutions and we have been working with some of them in these areas.

HRS Heat Exchangers for Pharmaceutical use
Pharma Vent Condenser
Corrugated Heat Exchangers

Q. Brief us about the quality policy for the business?

Ans:    We have a quality policy that enables us to ensure that we manufacture quality products that is valued by the customer.

We at HRS are committed to achieving customer satisfaction by providing them in time Quality products, through building systems and processes in place.

We are committed to quality objectives stated in the Quality Management System and to Satisfy Statutory, Regulatory and any other applicable requirements.

We believe our Quality Management System will help us to enhance customer satisfaction through continual improvement and feedback from Customer and from within.

Q. Can you brief us more about HRS India’s top line product range?

Ans:    HRS offers range of customized heat exchangers and heat exchanger based systems for a wide spectrum of manufacturing and process industries. HRS products range includes ECOFLUX* corrugated tube heat exchangers, HRS Funke plate heat exchangers and customized heat exchanger based systems. HRS offers food processing industry with an advanced product range of HRS Monobloc* Aseptic Steriliser with Filler, evaporation systems, turnkey beverage processing solutions as well as Unicus® scrapped surface heat exchanger, Hygienic Piston Pump, HRS ParaDice dice pasteurizer and systems for special applications in dairy, nutraceuticals and infant food supplements.

Ecoflux*corrugated tube heat exchanger has been our flagship product which has revolutionised thermal processing with high efficiency, compact size and low fouling nature. This heat exchanger has different models based on application and industry segment.

Ecoflux* ‘K Series’ heat exchanger is the most preferred design for pharma and other process industries. This is a fixed tube sheet, shell & tube heat exchanger which is also designed for TEMA, ASME and other codes.

Ecoflux* ‘MI Series’ is a multi-tube heat exchanger specially designed for food and other hygienic applications.

Ecoflux* ‘DT Series’ is a tube-in-tube heat exchanger designed for fluids with particulates or high viscosity.

Ecoflux* ‘AS series’ CTHE is our specially designed tube-in-tube-in-tube heat exchanger where alternate service and utility fluids can be circulated for highly efficient processing.

ECOFLUX* Corrugated Tube Heat Exchangers are typically shell and corrugated tube heat exchangers which are used for various industrial applications, like heating, cooling, condensation, sub-cooling, reboiler, recuperater, heat recovery and similar. These are available for various operating conditions and process fluids across the industry.  We supply units operating under very high pressure and temperatures. These heat exchangers are manufactured in a range of stainless steel 304 / 316/ L, 904L, Duplex, Supper Duplex, Inconel, Monel, Hastelloy C276, C22, C2000, Copper alloys, Titanium and Tantalum.

With over 20,000 installation references in India and over 100,000 references globally Ecoflux* has become a brand of its own and HRS a highly valued heat exchanger company.

V Gokul Das

Q. Please highlight the global perspective of the heat transfer industry and what is the differentiating factor?

Ans:    Globally heat exchangers form the backbone of any process plant and thus has immense growth potential. The heat transfer industry can be classified in different ways. First on the basis of size, i.e., the diameter and the length of the heat exchanger; another on the basis of constructions, e.g., shell and tube, plate type heat exchanger, etc; on the basis of end-use e.g., condenser, heater, reboiler, evaporator, recuperater, etc. We can also have a classification of heat exchangers on the basis of material of construction like carbon steel, stainless steel, exotic material like Hastelloy, titanium, Alloy 20, etc.

Energy-efficient and cost-effective equipment requirement has been the primary driving force for the usage of the technically advanced process system. Further processes today demand high level of quality (purity) and reliability and thus enhancing technology is the only solution. Productivity has always been a concern and companies look at equipments which can help enhance productivity at much lower energy cost.

HRS sensed these opportunities and have developed heat exchangers for service across process industry spectrum in chemical, agrochemical, fine chemicals, pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, petrochemicals, fertilizers, steel, power, cement, HVAC, food and beverage, fruit pulp, fruit beverage, nutraceuticals, prepared food and a host of applications across other sectors for heating and cooling.

The need for equipment with advance materials, which have higher corrosion resistance and better thermal properties, has led us to develop and offer heat exchangers in range of stainless steel 304/316/L, 904L, Copper & CuproNickel alloys, Duplex, Super Duplex, Inconel, Monel, Hastelloy C276, C22, C2000, AL6XN, etc.

We believe the heat transfer industry will grow at a decent rate with new innovative products capturing more market in the coming years. There will also be need for heat transfer industry to understand the process industry requirement and optimize on heat transfer solutions whereby the cost of ownership can be reduced and thus help reduce cost of production.

Q. What are the key technological trends that are driving the heat exchangers Industry?

Ans:    Heat exchanger industry is driven by need to look at various utilities like heating and cooling medium, which can also be processed fluids (rather than utilities) thus requiring proper analysis of material compatibility and behaviors when exposed to processed fluids. Water being a scarce resource there is a trend to move towards air cooling which has its own limitations and is also impacting the environment with higher ambient air temperatures leading to localised warming. Going forward the heat transfer industry will have to look at design of equipment that can utilize the process heat and thus reduce the energy cost with minimal increase in equipment cost.

Q. According to you what are the factors affecting to your business?

Ans:    Every company is affected by the external environment which includes the performance of various process industries, consumer demand for their products, prices of raw material used into the manufacture of equipment, local and international Government policies, financial and similar.

One of the key challenges in our segment with respect to any market is “cost-effective solution” or “low cost of ownership” for the customer. The customer today needs to be convinced on this very important aspect of the process equipment manufacturer solution and the technology been provided for their application. Customers not only want customisation but at the same time want flexibility in equipment usage for a set of variation in process and product processed. Thus, we have to understand this important aspect of customer requirement and propose effective solutions. Those make a winning combination.

Q. Explain Your Business in your one word?

Ans:    Sustainable Growth!

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