Paul Ricard, President, DP Technology Corp (ESPRIT)

How has the journey been for DP Technology?
DP Technology was started in 1982 with an aim to provide simple solutions to the complex machining operations. We (Paul and his partner Daniel Frayssinet who is currently CEO of the company) had realised the need for user friendly CAM software when CNC technology was taking its baby steps in the market. Infact the name DP from our company name ‘DP Technology Corp’ stands for our first name Daniel and Paul.

The three words that characterise DP Technology is passion, vision and commitment. Back in 1982, when the concept of CNC was very new and there were no simple solutions for programming machine tools, we had an idea and that’s how it all began. Our passion for the technology has kept us going for years. We also have a very passionate team and many of them have been with us for more than 15 years. Our associate team in India is also very energetic and this is one of the most important factor that has helped us grow.

When it comes to vision, ours is to be the technology leader. Throughout our journey we have had many firsts and intend to continue with the good work. We were the first during mid 90s to come up with pure windows based software. In early 2000, we saw a new trend, multitasking machining, multitasking function, mill turn machine. None of our competitors saw that but we immediately started developing software capability and rewriting software so that you can make milling and turning programme in same software. It was very difficult task; all our competitors had separate software for milling and turning operation. But today it paid off, today we are the leaders in mill-turn multitasking machining.

Coming to commitment. We believe in either giving our best or don’t do it at all. We had given the same kind of commitment to the Indian market. We are present in India since the late 90s, The country holds huge opportunity for CAM providers. Before focusing on selling more we invested in service and training. We did all this for free to satisfy our customer. We have bigger ambition for India and we are here to stay, even after I retire (chuckles). We will be here serving our Indian customers closely.

What are the changes that you have observed in CAM industry? How has the technology evolved?
The development of high-end machines has always been the driving force for the CAM technology. Technologies like mill-turn, multitasking machining, started several years ago in USA and Western Europe because of the demand for high accuracy and lack of trained manpower. Now, you have these machines where you put the raw material and outcome is the finished part, this trend is coming to India of late. It has already been adopted by big companies and you will see the technology soon making it to mid-side and smaller companies.

How do you see the demand for highly automated technology and business for CAM providers like you in India?
Well, it starts with deriving more productivity and high accuracy. Any kind of complex machine which requires neat shape will or rather are driving the business for us. Indians need to come forward to adopt these technologies. India has to adopt these technology to be competitive, to provide higher accuracy with low cost. India cannot rely exclusively on the fact that labour is cheap, because for those complex machines cheap labour is not going to help. If India wants to continue to build simple parts, they will eventually lose out on competitiveness.

On the other hand, India that is emerging has lots of ground to cover in terms of infrastructure and that infrastructure demand will lead to demand from various sectors. And all of this needs to come from India rather than importing which is expensive.

Are you are optimistic about the Indian market?
Absolutely! 2014 was a great year for us. We tripled ourselves in terms of business compared to 2013. We are starting small but we see a lot of potential in the country. I don’t pretend to know much about Indian political situation, but I have heard from people that there is a definite pro-business stance in India right now with the new government. This is great news for everyone who wants to do business in India.

The Indian rupee has changed a lot against dollar in the last couple of months, how much has it affected your business?
We had decided many years ago that whenever we go and make a commitment to any market be it China, Japan, Western Europe or India, we would adjust our price according to the local currency. So we have a price listing for all these countries, in that way our distributors don’t have to worry about the change in exchange rate. This is very important for us too, as we want to be local we have adopted the local culture and provide solution as per their needs.

What are the challenges that you face in the Indian market?
India is very large country, sometime it’s tough to reach out to all the manufacturing destinations. DP is moving towards establishing and expanding itself in the market and have plans to hire people to address this coverage issue. As we grow and solidify ourselves in the market, finding right people is going to be tough. Also, at times it is difficult to convince people in India about the latest technologies as they have been using the conventional methods. It will take time to make them see the benefits of these new and advanced high end softwares and technology.

By Nishant Kashyap