Interview: A conversation with Mr Alain Spohr, Managing Director of Alstom India

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Our Managing Editor Mr. Narendra Shah had a conversation with Mr. Alain Spohr, Managing Director of Alstom India. Mr. Spohr discussed the various aspects of the firm and his plans.

We present here a part of the interview here :

NS – Before beginning with the questions, we welcome you to the conversation. How has your experience been working in India? 

AS – Thank you for extending this opportunity. Alstom has been associated with India’s progress for over a century now. As the country underwent various phases of economic reforms, we worked towards providing the much-needed technological expertise. Being a multi-specialist in rail transport, we brought experience, knowledge, and required expertise which differentiated us from the rest.

I have been with Alstom for over three decades now and have been working in India for more than 17 years now – numerous cities, various roles across different verticals within the company which gave me immense opportunity to learn and grow. Now, as the Managing Director of Alstom India and South Asia, I am entrusted with the responsibility to strengthen the company’s presence in the region and to ensure best quality and timely completion of all projects. 

I’m a mechanical engineer and so engineering marvels always interest me. My inclination towards the transportation sector grew when I started realizing the importance of this sector. It touches everyone’s life and yet there was so much more that needed to be done to improve its condition to meet the needs of modern society.  Localizing technology, improving efficiencies while reducing cost and developing green and smarter mobility solutions have always interested me and here in India, I got a chance to work closely with bright minds.  With several large-scale projects underway in the mainline and urban space, I believe Alstom is uniquely positioned to meet India’s changing and growing mobility needs.

NS – What is the current market sentiment? How is Alstom positioned to cater to this?

AS – The domestic market has immense potential to grow and India has all the right ingredients for success. PM Modi’s call for ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ is a good opportunity for the country to explore its true potential. For Alstom, this is an exciting time to be present in the fast-growing Indian market. We have been able to combine local presence and knowledge with global technology expertise. This guarantees greater proximity with our customers and enables the company to design solutions best suited for local technical, economic, and environmental needs. 

Today, Alstom employs more than ~5600 full time employees. With four manufacturing facilities, (Sri City, Coimbatore, Madhepura, and Kolkata), large R&D base (in Bengaluru) coupled with localized supply chain, we are able to cater not only to the Indian market but also contribute to global projects.

NS – How is your company taking the Make in India and Atmanirbhar Bharat (Self Reliant India) initiatives? Do you have any plans for opening more manufacturing units in India?

AS – We welcome this move which will be an added impetus to the ‘Make in India’ initiative, further strengthening the Atma Nirbhar (Self-reliance) mission. To achieve this goal, it is important to nurture and build the sourcing and supply chain capabilities in the country.  As a firm, we are already largely localized, and continue to work with suppliers to strengthen this ecosystem and promote indigenous manufacturing in the country. We are confident that we will be able to achieve this position of self-reliance soon.

Alstom has been associated with India’s progress for several decades and has a long-standing reputation for providing highly innovative and sustainable solutions for meeting the country’s transport requirements. We are fully committed to the country’s infrastructure development; as you would see that our investments and revolutionary mobility solutions introduced in the country, speaks for itself. In line with the Government of India’s ‘Make in India’ initiative, Alstom has been investing in the country to produce world-class rolling stock, components, design, research and development to serve not only the domestic market but also the rest of the globe. With four large factories across the country, Alstom has indigenous production for metro train sets, electric locomotives, electrical traction, and control equipment. We are geared towards addressing the rolling stock and component needs of Indian Railways in the days to come and expanding our footprint in India. Alstom has no plans to start new factories in India currently………

For reading the detailed interview, kindly subscribe to our magazine & read the rest part of the Interview in October issue of our magazine.

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