Tamil Nadu tender to grind out small grinder makersJune 17th, 2011 - 6:14 pm ICT by IANS
Chennai, June 17 (IANS) Small grinder manufacturers in Tamil Nadu are feeling excluded as the AIADMK-led government’s tender specifications for sourcing 2.5 million units for its free distribution scheme disqualifies them from participating.
The state government has floated a tender for sourcing grinders, mixers, fans numbering 2.5 million each, and an international competitive tender for 912,000 laptops.
The grinders, mixers and fans will be distributed to families eligible to draw rice from the public distribution system (PDS) while laptops will be given to students of government-owned or aided educational institutes.
As per the grinder tender conditions, the annual turnover of the bidder in any one of the previous three financial years would have to be not less than Rs.50 million.
In the case of consortium bidder with three members, the lead member needs to meet the turnover requirement prescribed to the extend of at least 50 percent and the other two members at least 25 percent of the annual turnover requirement individually.
Thereby, the cumulative turnover of all the three members in any one year has to be not less than Rs.50 million.
In the case of two-member consortium, the lead member should have a turnover of Rs.25 million and the other member at least Rs.12.5 million and the cumulative turnover of the consortium needs to be Rs.50 million in any one year.
“The minimum turnover condition would disqualify many of the individual grinder manufacturers in Coimbatore and would be favourable for major corporates,” B. Shakthi, president of the Coimbatore Wet Grinder Manufacturers Association (COWMA), told IANS.
“Even as a consortium, our members would not be able to meet the qualifying criteria. Majority of grinder makers in the Coimbatore belt have an annual turnover of less than Rs.10 million,” he added.
Located around 500 km from here, Coimbatore is a hub of grinder makers. Grinders are essential for making batter of rice and urad dal for dosas, idlis and vadas.
The state government has estimated a total cost of Rs.6 billion for the purchase of 2.5 million grinders.
There are around 200 units in Coimbatore producing around 100,000 units per month. There are around 500 units supplying components to grinder-makers. The industry has a direct workforce of around 20,000.
Unlike many other consumer durables that are invented abroad, grinders are designed, developed and mainly manufactured in Coimbatore.
According to industry players, the government and industry could benefit if the order is given to units that are part of the cluster.
“The cluster members can form a cooperative and bid for the government tender. If it gets the order, then the volume could be divided amongst the members. The industries can invest in modernisation and workforce, if backed by good order book,” a manufacturer said.
According to Shakthi, meeting the product specifications — stainless steel drum of 22 gauge thickness, use of food grade plastics and other things, are not an issue for the manufacturers.
On the product specifications, he said the government has stipulated that the grinder should be powered by 150 watt motor, whereas the manufacturers use 100 watt.
According to him, the association will voice its concerns at the June 21 pre-bid conference to be held here.
For the mixer-makers making the bids, the average annual turnover in the previous three financial years has to be not less than Rs.300 million with an annual manufacturing capacity of 200,000 units.
In the case of three/two member consortium bidder, the lead member must meet the 100 percent turnover requirement and the other members 50 percent of the stipulation individually.
The Tamil Nadu government has estimated the two-jar mixer tender at Rs.5 billion and the table fans at Rs.2.5 billion.
“Our team is studying the technical specifications mentioned in the tender and its implications,” said Vijay Srinivasan, marketing director at Maya Appliances, which manufactures mixers under Preethi brand.
(V. Jagannathan can be contacted at email@example.com)
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Tags: 10 million, 5 million, 50 million, aiadmk, annual turnover, coimbatore, corporates, distribution scheme, educational institutes, free distribution, grinders, manufacturers association, member consortium, mixers, pds, public distribution system, rs 50, state government, tender specifications, wet grinder