It’s nothing new to say India is among the most happening geographies on the globe for audio visual and systems integration business. It’s been happening over a few years now, and it promises to continue for years to come, albeit with its own set of challenges from time to time. Second largest market in Asia, India continues to excite the market in its own imitable fashion- probably in sharp contrast to most other promising markets in Asia, with its own kind of SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and strengths).

In tune with its tradition of bringing one Country Analysis almost every issue, SI ASIA prides in presenting India Country Analysis – at a time that is considered one of its most decisive phases in recent times – coinciding with InfoComm India 2015. Get set to be treated to an offering of an altogether new fare.

India – a country of around 1.25 billion people, and a market size of over US$ 4 trillion – is on a cusp of high growth. With a GDP rate that appears to outstrip that of China, it is already billed one of the fastest growing/expanding markets in the world.

Indian Space Research Organisation control room
Indian Space Research Organisation control room

With most growth parameters scaling up impressively, (s)taking an important share of the dynamic is audio-visual industry. With a technologically proactive government leading the charge with a series of potentially growth-effecting initiatives, the industry, for one, appears more promising than ever- though the concerns come chipping in their own part.

According to an InfoComm International market survey, Indian Sub-Continent AVSI industry stood at US$3.7 billion in 2014, and promises to touch US$5.4 billion by 2016.

Guwahati High Court Chief Justice conference room
Guwahati High Court Chief Justice conference room

Together with the sub-continental countries of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, and Sri Lanka, India has grown at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14 per cent between 2012 and 2014; it now promises to better that slightly by one per cent (15 per cent) by 2016. It goes without saying that India takes a dominant share of this growth. On its part, SI ASIA confined itself to Indian market specifically, and the findings have been truly impressive- so much so that almost the whole industry felt positive about the growth, with almost 50 per cent being very bullish on the prospects.

The industry sees the growth being majorly contributed by corporate segment which accounted for as much as 46 per cent, followed by government with almost 25 per cent, and education segment with roughly 15 per cent. More, the growth is being witnessed maximum in Audio/Video conferencing equipment/solutions market that appears to account for as much as 42 per cent.

The business of displays appears to be another major market with over 22 per cent stake while projectors business appeared third with over 15 per cent. There are, of course, other areas of potential growth as well.

“Specialised applications such as network operation centres (NOC), EOCs, simulation and virtualization projects are emerging as potentially strong growth areas,” felt Murguan Paramasivam, Director, Lightware Visual Engineering, India.

High-end AV production support by Highbrow Production Services
High-end AV production support by Highbrow Production Services

Almost endorsing the view is Vivekanand, Country Director-India, Barco Electronics (P) Ltd: “Surveillance, process control solutions offer strongest growth potential.”

According to Ketul Patel, CEO and MD of Graphic Vision Pvt Ltd, other segments of potential growth comprise mass transportation means and street kiosks offering signage applications for advertising.

Malayala Manorama TV studio backdrop
Malayala Manorama TV studio backdrop

Majority of the industry appears to be reconciling to the fact that its solutions/business is being increasingly required to work in an IT network infrastructure- pointing to the growing convergence of AV&IT into the ICT domain.

On the challenges front, the industry continues to suffer from the dearth of skilled/professional talent. While almost half of the industry surveyed felt lack of professional manpower as the major challenge for its business, extreme price sensitivity of customers has also been a big challenge. It’s been labeled as a “necessary evil” to live with.

“Despite certifications from vendors for their products, most AV engineers do not understand basics of AV as they are just not conversant with basics of AV,” felt Ketul Patel.

Says V S Satyanarayana, consultant from Audio Visual Engineers: “India needs a lot of new generation AV convergence professionals; they also need to understand various AV & IT platforms, formats evolving day to day.”

According to Grifiths Zachariah, Technical Sales Director-IME, ClearOne, ‘lack of professionals to understand technology has been a major challenge.

Guru Jambheswhar University seminar hall
Guru Jambheswhar University seminar hall

“Our Industry needs to understand technology to be able to deliver the right solution to right customer.’ A potential threat, so to say, to genuine industry growth, appears to be the OEM behavior.

“Third party Chinese OEMs trying to directly deal with the clients, picking up orders, and then faltering to provide build-and-after-sales-support has been a potential challenge,” feels Prajesh, National sales Manager, Genesis IT Innovations Ltd.

“OEMs are not taking a “value partner” approach; they are only interested in moving boxes,” says Kuldip Kamat, Managing Director, All Wave AV Systems.

Having said all that, India is billed as “a land of immense opportunities.” With a proactive government leading its march into the future, it is hoped the positives would be transformed into business cases.

To have a better understanding of the results of the SI Asia Survey, we offer you the information in graphics. Enjoy the read.

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