27 Nov 2019, 13:38 — 6 min read
Ajit Singh Ahluwalia is the dynamic third-generation heir to a business empire established by his grandfather and built by his father. Surindra Engineering (part of Mukat Group of Companies) specialises in the manufacture of Submerged Arc Welded (SAW) pipes and these pipes are used extensively for oil, gas and water works projects all across India.
Watch this video to find out how Ajit is proudly carrying forward his family business legacy.
GlobalLinker (GL) spoke to Ajit about his inspiration, motivation and aspirations. Excerpts from the interview.
GL: Ajit, tell us what motivates you as an entrepreneur?
Ajit: I am heading my family business started by my grandfather and it’s been 50 years since he established the company. Being the third-generation custodian of the business and the responsibility to carry forward legacy brings the excitement and motivation to go to work.
GL: How does your business differentiate itself in the industry?
Ajit: Usually the pipe industry caters to various sectors, most prominent being cross country pipelines for oil, gas and water transportation. But we are working differently by helping the oil and gas refineries fulfil their needs of the implant piping they require along with the helping various states in India for their water supply works and projects.
Being the third-generation custodian of the business and the responsibility to carry forward legacy brings the excitement and motivation to go to work.
GL: What are the challenges for your business to grow bigger, better and faster from here? What are you doing to tackle them?
Ajit: Every day is a new challenge to grow the business as now days globally there are various changes, for example the oil price and steel prices duties etc which leads to a delay of project execution. However, since the new strong government in India has been established a number of infrastructure projects are being done which is pushing for the demand to deliver faster and also products to be ‘Made in India’ which are helpful to major Indian industries and manufactures.
To grow bigger, we have to understand how to keep a proper check on the overheads while growing especially when the economy could be heading for a slowdown. To get better and faster we have been doing continuous R&D and also investing heavily in the latest technology which is the need of the hour. We have to always finds ways to have a much higher and efficient output in the same amount of time per day.
GL: How has GlobalLinker helped you? Can you share some examples?
Ajit: GlobalLinker has helped our company connect globally through their platform to similar and various other businesses. These businesses fulfil our business needs, be it as service providers or in trade. In 2019 we represented our company at TradeConnect in Singapore which was organised by GlobalLinker and helped us connect with many companies from all over the world.
GL: Could you name three things that have been instrumental to your success?
Ajit: My grandfather—his success story inspires me till date. My father—his hard work and dedication motivates me to keep moving forward no matter how big the challenge is. And most importantly, the goodwill of the company over the last five decades which is something I believe can make a person extremely successful.
GL: What is the next big thing on your business agenda?
Ajit: Expansion in the same product line is my key focus going forward.
GL: What advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?
Ajit: The only advice I ever took and which I feel should be given is: You always start with zero and make something, so even if in the end if you lose all, you would never be at a loss. But to never try is the biggest loss.
GL: We would love to know the person behind the entrepreneur.
Every day you wake up at – 5:00 AM
The first thing you do when you wake up – Thank God for another day
Things you do to unwind are – I play squash or a sport to unwind and relax by spending time with family
The best piece of advice you’ve ever been given – Trying and failing is okay but don’t fail without trying
When I face a big challenge – I reaffirm the best advice I have been given and go ahead with making the decision for the challenge
The one book everyone should read – I don't read books, I feel every person has a book in them. Look around you there are many people with their success stories, and these are the best books; if you can find one excellent, if not write your own.
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