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March 9, 1998


JTS Tech prepares to enter Indian market

Email this story to a friend. The Madras based JTS Technologies Limited is aiming for 5 per cent of the global market in hard disk drives, which might make it a well over Rs 10 billion company, even as it is all set to enter the domestic market.

The almost wholly owned subsidiary (98.5 per cent) of the US based JTS Corp based in the Madras Export Processing Zone is the sole manufacturing
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JTS Corp President and CEO David T Mitchell said the company wanted to garner a 5 per cent market share by 2000, of a total market, which is expected to be about 200 million units.

Currently, the company has about a 1 per cent market share of a total market of 132 million units. It is investing about $10 million for increasing its capacity by 1 million units, which would take its total capacity to 3 million units per annum.

The company has a loan from the Exim Bank for the same.

To achieve a 5 per cent market share, which is about 10 million units per annum, the company may have to invest enough to more than treble its capacity by 2000.

"We would be investing about $10 million annually towards expansion,'' said C Sriram, finance controller, JTS Technologies.

The company has already invested about Rs 1,200 million so far in its fixed assets, which was mainly the assembling plant. Further expansion may be in the same unit and probably in other places in the country, said Mitchell.

On plans for the domestic market, currently about 800,000 units, Harpal Singh Gill, managing director, JTS Technologies, said that they are aiming for a 60 per cent share of the "growing'' Indian market in the medium term.

He estimates the Indian market to be about 20 million units by 2000.

"While the majority demand in the Indian market is mainly for 1.3 GB and 2.3 GB disks, the customers are upgrading,'' said Gill. JTS also has announced its launch of a 6.4 GB hard disk drive. This will be available in the domestic market too. The company also announced that it is setting up a dedicated portion of the capacity for OEM production for Compaq and would further explore such tie-ups with Indian OEMs too.

"The company is already in the process of tying up with distributors throughout the country. We will offer low cost drives which are as good as that of our competitors, backed by good service and support,'' said Gill.

JTS' competitors worldwide are companies such as Seagate, Quantum and Western Digital, who sell here by importing.

JTS, which started manufacturing and operations in March 1995, rose to prominence when its revenue of Rs 930 million in 1995-96 rose to Rs 6.27 billion in 1996-97.

With this figure, according to the company, it is the third largest IT company and exporter in the country, employing over 5,000 people.

Its net foreign exchange inflow is about 12 per cent, which means about Rs 5.5 billion of the export of Rs 6.27 billion is the import content.

The company did not expect any significant growth in the turnover for 1997-98, as "we have allocated significant amounts for expansion this year,'' said Sriram.

The company expects about the same turnover and volumes as last year.

- Compiled from the Indian media

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