Shree R.N. Metals: Balls of fortune

     Print Edition: Nov 14, 2010

Star SME (Small)

Shree R.N. Metals (India)

Person: Roop Narayan Sharma
Turnover (2009-10): Rs 42 crore
PAT (2009-10): Rs 1.52 crore
Business: Grinding media balls

Jaipur-based Shree R.N. Metals (India) is on a roll. Its revenues have doubled from Rs 21 crore in 2007-08 to Rs 42 crore in 2009-10. And there's no rocket science in its product: grinding media balls of forged and cast iron and chrome alloys. These balls are used by coal-burning power plants, steel mills, and the mining industry for grinding raw materials like coal or as counterweights.

Roop Narayan Sharma, Founder and Director, says every consuming industry is expanding. "About 20 new cement plants with 17.35 million tonnes of capacity have come up in 2009-10, and existing plants have expanded by four million tonnes.... the mining sector has grown by 9.7 per cent, and steel consumption is also up," he says. The industry needs a total of 100,000 tonnes of balls a year. Sharma can make 18,000 tonnes. So he is building a 12,000-tonne plant.

But Sharma does have his worries. The scrap metals used to make these balls have become costlier by Rs 1,500 a tonne over the past four or five months. "We operate on a wafer-thin margin," he says. Three-fourths of his clients are government-owned companies that sign fixed price contracts. "We can renegotiate only with private sector companies," he says.

-Manu Kaushik

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