The financial year 2016-17 has been an eventful one.
We have witnessed several developments, both internationally and in our country concerning geo-political, economic and social sectors. The US Presidential elections’ verdict and BREXIT were amongst the two major global developments. Globally, it seemed like a recurring theme to look inwardly and strongly promote national manufacturing and service offerings in order to protect and create jobs locally. This of course, is in strong contrast to the opinions by other international leaders who were stressing importance of global trade and cooperation.
India went through quite a significant transformation with the announcement and implementation of Demonetisation, Re-monetisation, Goods and Service Tax (GST), Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code and Real Estate (Regulation & Development) Act. These reforms will have a long lasting impact on the Indian economy, although the impact might be negative in short run. Against this backdrop India witnessed reasonable GDP growth of 7.1% in 2016-17.
India has also gained some ground with respect to next generation technologies such as Internet of Things (loT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Automation. The adoption and penetration of such technologies will fundamentally alter the way products and services are conceived, designed, manufactured, delivered, consumed and paid for. These advances in technology will undoubtedly throw many challenges whilst creating exciting opportunities.
The winner will clearly be the one who is able to anticipate and be ready for such transformational disruption.
As for Bosch Limited, the Company was well prepared for a nation-wide transition to Bharat Stage (BS) IV. The Supreme Court judgement directing the switchover of sales to BS IV effective April 01, 2017 has been a definitive milestone causing some logistical difficulties for the industry. Your company was ready and prepared to offer solutions to all its customers that made this transition smooth and effective. As for BS VI, the Government of India has announced the transition directly from Bharat Stage IV to Bharat Stage VI by 2020. This is for the first-time in the country, perhaps even globally, that a country would be leap frogging from BS IV to BS VI skipping the entire stage of BS V. It is collectively agreed that skipping an entire stage has put the Indian automotive ecosystem under tremendous pressure. However, we at Bosch Limited are preparing ourselves to meet this challenge through appropriate investments in technology and capacity building.
Bosch Limited is committed to growing its business beyond mobility portfolio. In order to achieve the Government’s ambitious target of 100 GW of solar power generation in the country by 2022, your Company is committed to play its part. The 4MW ground mounted solar project at New Mangalore Port Trust is amongst the first sea port projects for Bosch in India with more success stories to come. Business units such as, Bosch Energy and Building Solutions (BEBS), Security Technologies and Power Tools, among others have successfully been able to offer products and solutions tailored to cater to requirements of the local market.
The future is full of challenges, yet each challenge offers an opportunity. This has been the driving force behind our fascination for the future and pursuit of innovation to build a better tomorrow. India plays a key role in Bosch’s global success and we are committed to identifying new opportunities, and providing solutions that bring customer delight. Our continued investment in facilities across the country will enhance our market reach and complement India’s growth story. While doing this, we continue to offer our employees an enriching career and forums to enhance their skill sets and capabilities, making them ready for the future. Being responsible fiscally and environmentally is something which shapes our identity and secures our future.
On behalf of Bosch, I take the opportunity to thank all the shareholders for their sustained support. Over last 10 years, your company has been successful in increasing the shareholder wealth by approximately 21% CAGR in addition to two buyback during the years 2008 and 2016. We are committed to enhancing shareholders value and remain humbled by the trust and support extended by you over these years.
Chairman - Board of Directors,