Our target is to supply 135 units this year (Jan to Dec) and we expect to grow by 20 per cent for the next five years, says DV Brahme, Regional Manager, Mait India Foundation Equipment. In an exclusive chat with Equipment India, Brahme speaks about the industry trends and the company's product offerings for the foundation engineering segment. Excerpts from the interview.How is MAIT placed to meet the challenging demands in this evolving scenario? The vibrancy in the market is evident in the foundation equipment segment and MAIT is fully prepared to meet the challenging demands in the evolving scenario. We are steadily increasing our manpower strength, as well as updating the skill levels of existing manpower. We also are increasing our reach in the market by opening offices at new locations.What is the performance of the last two quarters and how does MAIT look at ending this fiscal? We go by the calendar year. Last year was good for us. The first half of 2011 has also been good and the remaining half looks promising; that will continue the double-digit growth experienced last year.Which are the major verticals MAIT expects more business from and what is the growth pattern at present? All through the first half of this year, the maximum business has come from power sector as many power plants are under construction. We expect the power sector will keep the lead this year followed by ports, roads, industrial construction and the Metro rail. Also, many railway projects are in the offing and will boost the demand once their work starts.Is there a move by MAIT towards more green/fuel-efficient technology products with more value add-ons? Already the products offered by MAIT are most modern and world-class, complying with the latest and toughest emission norms, at the same time most affordable in the global context. Piling, a method of foundation, for which these rigs are used, is fuel-efficient and eco-friendly, as it avoids movement of large quantity of materials from one place to another (excavation, carting, dumping and back filling), that saves fuel, time as well as space.MAIT rigs are specially versatile machines that can be utilised for bored piles, diaphragm walls, CFA piles, driven piles, essentially saving on cost of separate equipment for different applications.Tell us about the safety features inbuilt in the machines. There are many safety features inbuilt in MAIT rigs. Some of the features are mentioned below:Cabin cut off - the moment operator gets up from his seat, all the hydraulic functions stop automatically to avoid accidents. The operator cabin has Fall over Protection System (FOPS).There are emergency shut-off buttons provided inside the operator cabin as well as on the outside body of the rig that is accessible to other persons at site.The hydraulic cylinders fitted on the rigs have a locking system that automatically stops supply of hydraulic oil to a particular function, in case of damage to the tubes or hoses, avoiding further accidents.What are the latest technology trends in this segment? As mentioned before, the equipment supplied by MAIT is the latest in the world. The rigs being supplied now are of utmost technological innovation in terms of methodology. These are the products matured by many decades of experimentation and upgradation. Of course, small technological changes like upgrading to more and more fuel-efficient engines with minimum emission, increased computerised controlled engines, are all ongoing things.Regarding the piling industry in India, we see a slow but definite change towards higher specification piles like bigger diameters and more depths.Tell us about the rental scenario. The rental segment is growing steadily since the last few years and in the future, it will dominate the mid-sized segment of drilling rigs with 20T torque. As the availability of rental rigs go up, the contracting companies will rely on them for mid-sized rigs and procure only the special purpose and large-sized equipment (rigs) that are more capital intensive.What are the major challenges the industry faces? The challenges are the same that are faced by the construction equipment industry. One is the poor availability of suitable transport facility complying with the specified road norms to carry such heavy equipment.As almost hundred per cent of the equipment is imported, mitigating the risk of fluctuating exchange rate of Indian rupee against Euro/Dollar is another major challenge, especially for the small and upcoming companies.How upgraded are our codes and specs with regard to foundation engineering? Our codes and specs are very old and outdated, especially with regards to rock socketing. Of course, there always is an element of false alarm in designers/ consultants, due to which there has been very little effort to change these outdated codes. Also, some of the piling techniques widely used in other parts of world are not recognised by our codes.How do you view the business pattern - is it from the direct user-segment or the rental segment? The segment of general purpose or mid-sized rigs having 20T torque will be dominated by rental segment and the direct users will concentrate on owning special purpose high capital intensive equipment.What is target for this fiscal? How do you look at the growth prospects in the next five years?Our target is to supply 135 units this calendar year. We expect to grow by an average 20 per cent for the next five years.