Hungry for growth

Caterpillar Asia managing director Chris Curfman says his company's capabilities in India will make a positive impact on development in Asia as a whole

Chris CurfmanChennai: "India is an important part of our company's overall strategy to grow our presence in Asia — including China and elsewhere. Caterpillar has outstanding development, manufacturing and distribution capabilities in India which we believe can be used to make a positive impact on the development opportunities we see not only in India, but Asia as a whole," says Chris Curfman, managing director (Asia Pacific marketing), Caterpillar Asia.

Curfman oversees the Asian operations, which generate around 13 per cent of the American company's $20.15-billion global revenues. An old hand in the earthmoving equipment industry, Curfman, after his graduation in 1975, joined Wallace Machinery. In 1979 he moved over to Deere & Co. It was in 1994 that he joined Caterpillar Inc, USA.

Does Caterpillar have any plans to make India its sourcing base for machines and components [diesel engines and earthmoving equipment]? If yes, which are the products to be sourced, and for which markets?
Caterpillar has been sourcing various components for engines and earthmoving equipment from India for quite some time, for our operations in the US, Asia and Europe. We are very impressed with the industrial capability of our India-based supplier network and our own operations.

What is your India export plans?
For the present, our plans are to export components. However, we are constantly evaluating the capabilities of our manufacturing and product requirements throughout Asia and the world. We see a lot of opportunity, not only for machine exports out of India, but also for the possibility of more machine and engine products getting into India. We do see the Indian market as a major growth opportunity for our Asian operations.