In an excellent example of a local business achieving international success in India, Hampshire-based manufacturer and hovercraft designer Griffon Hoverwork (Griffon) has secured a contract from India for 12 new hovercraft, worth £32 million in new-build revenue.
When the final craft is delivered during August, Griffon will have a fleet of 18 medium-lift hovercraft with the Indian Coastguard and has done nearly a third (30%) of its business over the past four years with the country. In addition to the craft, Griffon consistently sells around £300,000 of spares every year for the original fleet of six craft and expects spares revenue to grow to around £1m on the increased fleet. Griffon is also currently working on two large contracts worth in excess of £90m for the Indian Army, with around 40% of the contract accrued in the UK.
Managing director Adrian Went said: “India is a fantastic market for us, as our partners there value the quality of the products we provide. While it can be a challenging and complex market for UK businesses to understand and successfully operate in generally, there is a wealth of support for UK companies looking to trade in and with India. We have been doing business with India for many years now and are hoping that, with Narendra Modi’s pro-business government, it will become easier, with fewer constraints in place.”
Prime minister Narendra Modi’s appointment in May 2014 is indicative of India becoming more open to business. Chancellor George Osborne met with Modi earlier this month and spoke of renewed confidence among international investors in the future of the Indian economy.
Hampshire is actively encouraging trade links between businesses based in the county and India. Hampshire Chamber of Commerce’s Asian Network and Dutton Gregory’s India Business Group both work with UK-based businesses and a network of firms in India, actively providing advice and assistance to UK clients and members wishing to explore new opportunities.
Jojar Singh, chair of Hampshire Chamber of Commerce Asian Network, added: “Hampshire Chamber Asian Network is there for its members to network, forge alliances and find advice and knowledge from businesses already trading in and with India. Providing this network allows members to consider India as a viable export market, and makes them aware of services the Chamber and its members can offer to help achieve this.”