Crestron Technologies has carved the path for technological innovation since 1971. They have created automation solutions which have changed the way people live their lives, bringing about simplicity and ease to their daily lives by improving efficiency and productivity. They’re found at the forefront of cutting-edge technology, constantly offering faster, better solutions that address the needs of customers world over. And they have been called a “Made in America Success Story” by Forbes.
Today we get candid in a chat with Mr. Gagan Verma, Executive Director – Crestron India and APAC over the future of AV and Automation Industry in India. Hereby we will refer to ourselves as TI (Tech Indian) and to Mr. Gagan Verma as GV.
TI: Hi Gagan! Creston technologies is a popular name in the West, but what about its current presence in India and how do you view the local market?
GV: Crestron set up a wholly owned subsidiary in India at Bengaluru last year. Highlighting Crestron’s latest solutions, the HQ features a fully functional Crestron Experience Centre, state-of-the-art training facilities and active workspaces.
India is facing a paradigm shift in the unified communications and automation sector. The boost in IT/ITeS, the manufacturing sector and even globalisation has been a game-changer for the industry. There is a sudden increase in demand for state-of-the-art audio-video conferencing facilities across different sectors in the country. In the future, we see the automation sector witness enormous growth in the country with companies willing to invest in various automation solutions to increase efficiency and productivity.
TI: How do you see the market for AV driven solutions, smart homes/ offices etc evolving here as compared to say a more tech savvy, developed market like the US?
GV: The AV industry in India is growing at a rapid pace and presents immense opportunity to develop the sector. We foresee that government initiatives like Digital India and the Smart Cities project will pave the way for technological advancements and more opportunities to implement AV driven solutions across various sectors in the country.
TI: What are your thoughts on the AV and automation industry in India? Any particular trend that you have seen?
GV: The AV and automation industry, especially with reference to corporate and industrial sectors and homes, is picking pace. It is common to see Crestron products in offices of some of the leading Indian companies as well as MNCs. Among the corporate companies, AV automation has become a culture now with new employees even being taught on using these tools for effective and collective outcomes of the organisations. Though the adoption is widespread in the corporate and industrial sectors, the automation industry is still on the growth curve. We see a lot of potential for our products, especially integrated with the latest innovations. The industry is seeing a lot of traction for business from the hospitality and the government sectors.
On the other hand, home automation is rapidly gaining acceptance. Today, in the metros, independent house plans by default have AV automation as a security feature. The awareness level is higher, and many house owners prefer some level of security. Though these features could be at the lower end of the spectrum, it signifies a beginning, as people will move up the value chain gradually.
Additionally, the convergence of Professional AV and ICT is leading to new trends like enterprise and room automation, huddle rooms, and remote working. The Indian market is growing at a health rate in double digits though the market is highly fragmented with poor penetration levels.
TI: As technology evolves, how is the AV industry evolving globally and what implications would this have?
GV: Over the past few years, AV technologies are enhancing their services and moving towards cloud and software based applications. With the growing trend to minimise hardware clutter, browser based cloud video conferencing has been growing drastically. The AV industry as a whole is growing every day. The future looks bright for the industry and these trends will only push us further.
TI: What are the key areas of focus for India and APAC for Crestron?
GV: While we are present in every sector ranging from residential to banking, we are currently focussing on three major verticals: enterprise, education and the government.
TI: So then, is Crestron ready for Industry 4.0?
GV: Being at the forefront of the ever-changing industry, we are definitely ready for Industry 4.0. We are now driving a transformation plan that goes beyond our day-to-day business. While we have always put our customers first, the digital transformation associated with Industry 4.0 will only further strengthen that through leveraging data, autonomous feedback, predictive analytics, and AI to continuously improve the quality, safety and efficacy of products and services we offer. Additionally, we are constantly upskilling across our Crestron offices so that we will all be ready to adopt and adapt to Industry 4.0
TI: How many clients do you offer solutions to, in Crestron, and who are they?
GV: Crestron Electronics has carved the path for technological innovation since 1971. We create automation solutions that transform the way people live their lives, making their day-to-day tasks easier and improving efficiency and productivity. Any industry that uses technology, automation and advanced control system is our customer from education solutions to workplace technology, government solutions, commercial lighting solutions are our customers.
TI: What will be the next big thing in terms of automation/systems?
GV: We are already seeing seamless integration of IoT in automation, however, are still in the nascent stage, as the nation needs a big push. The “Smart City” initiative is the first step in this direction and we expect automation to play a big role for society with IoT as the backbone. Based on IoT, we will see products and services being rolled out. With India offering a huge demographic divided, we expect automation to have greater acceptance and popularity in the coming days.
TI: What is the future of Crestron in India?
GV: India is a key market for us and we see significant growth potential & opportunity. We have and will continue to invest in India. The focus for India would be all sectors of the Indian market like the government, residential, corporate, hospitality and education, The AV industry has been growing at a rapid pace in the country and we expect initiatives like Digital India and Smart Cities to result in an increased demand for these solutions.
We have many large enterprise customers expanding their footprint and adopting these technologies in the growth of their business. This is a crucial time in India’s history as the country continues to go through digital transformation, bringing significant change to almost all sectors of society – from the way people receive critical services like healthcare to how students are taught, and business gets done. As ‘Digital India’ moves closer to becoming reality, there is a huge opportunity for companies like us.
TI: Thank you Gagan! That was very insightful, we wish you and Crestron the very best for its future in India.