The Kalyani Group will invest Rs. 600 crore in a defence manufacturing facility at Dholera in Gujarat. Likely to employ about 2,500 people, it will include the capacity to upgrade and overhaul armoured vehicles, with a plan to also make defence electronics and radar.
According to a memorandum of understanding signed with the state government recently at the Vibrant Gujarat Summit, the operations are likely to commence by 2016. Amit B Kalyani, executive director, Kalyani Group, said the setting up of the plant would be in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make in India' vision.
"We are confident that given an opportunity, we can become the manufacturing hub for the world," he said. Kalyani Group has already formed a 'Make In India' project team, with senior executives to work on an import substitution strategy. It is targeting $30-40 billion worth of iron and steel products that are currently imported for the defence, energy, automotive, construction and mining equipment industries. The group is undertaking its defence business through a subsidiary, Kalyani Strategic Systems.
The land at Dholera has been offered by the state government for putting up the plant. Kalyani Group's annual turnover is Rs. 12,000 crore and the plan is to increase thes business three to four times over the next 10 years, by embracing Make in India.
Beside the forging and engineering business of its flagship company, Bharat Forge, it is focusing on the non-automotive segments of the power, railway, aerospace, oil and gas, and defence industries. A large part of this will be on defence and aerospace.