Farrokh Cooper is the CMD of Cooper Corporation. Born in Mumbai on 13th January 1945, he completed his schooling in London and graduated in agriculture from Pune in 1967. In 1968, an unfortunate incident pushed him to take over the mantle of the family business on his shoulders. Under his leadership, the company has witnessed steady growth. In the last ten years alone, it has grown over by five folds.
Crankshaft is a critical component playing a key role in engine performance. How did Cooper Corporation manage the Chandrayaan-3 project's criticality and requirements for a successful cranking and mission accomplishment?
We received the request for a vital component of the crankshaft for ISRO’s Chandrayaan -3 mission, which was designed and provided by our team. As a part of the Chandrayaan mission, we have reached new heights, and it is the Cooper family’s privilege to have played a role in bringing Satara’s name to the international stage again.
Today, we are overjoyed by the successful outcome of this mission, and our employees’ dedication and hard work have been the cornerstone of our triumph.
For over ten decades, Cooper Corporation has been at the forefront of precision machining, specialising in the production of crankshafts. Our expertise extends across a diverse spectrum of engines, encompassing robust powerhouses and compact automotive marvels. Notably, we have contributed significantly to the automotive industry, bolstered the gensets engine line, and consistently supplied our proprietary engines with top-notch crankshafts. This wealth of experience has solidified crankshaft manufacturing as an integral and well-honed aspect of our operations. Our selection as a trusted partner is based on a rigorous evaluation of our credentials. We take immense pride in our track record of excellence, adherence to quality standards, and our role as a leader in the field have all played pivotal roles in securing our position as a preferred supplier of crankshafts.
How do you see Cooper’s journey since 1934 in technology advancements, team expertise, product development and future readiness?
Our history is interwoven with the very fabric of this region. In 1922, my grandfather embarked on a journey that would leave an enduring legacy. Venturing into the realm of innovation, he crafted diesel engines and ploughs that would serve as the cornerstone of our heritage.
Today, as we commemorate our centenary year, we reflect upon our dedication to this community. The passage of time has only deepened our connection to Satara, reinforcing our sense of pride and belonging.
We assert our leadership in the technology sphere, with achievements spanning decades ahead of our industry peers. Our commitment to research and development and pursuit of excellence positions us as pioneers within our field. The engines we craft, the machinery we design, and the solutions we offer are not mere products; they are manifestations of our relentless pursuit of innovation and quality.
As we look back upon a century of achievement and forward to a future illuminated with promise, Cooper Corporation remains an enduring testament to the power of determination, resilience, and the indomitable spirit of Satara.
We employ a predominantly local labour workforce in line with our commitment to local communities. This supports the growth and development of the regions in which we operate and fosters a sense of community and pride among our employees. Additionally, our focus on incorporating cutting-edge technology into our operations ensures that we maintain a competitive edge in the global market.
Which sectors will be key contributors to Cooper’s order book this year? Can you provide a percentage of current and expected contributions from sectors?
Our business is deeply rooted in agriculture, making us a comprehensive source for everything related to this sector. We have a strong presence across diverse domains, whether it’s tractors, engines, gensets, power tillers, or products associated with aluminium, defence, and railways. Simply put, when it comes to these areas, if you name it, we have it. Our commitment to serving a broad spectrum of industries and needs underscores our versatility and dedication to meeting the demands of our valued clientele.
Our journey has been marked by a commitment to international markets, stringent quality control through regular audits, a focus on local employment and community development, and embracing cutting-edge technology. We continue to be driven by a commitment to delivering top-tier products to a global clientele. Cooper Corporation has consistently demonstrated a robust commitment to international trade, with 50% of our production being exported to key markets in England, America, Europe, and Japan.
Can you throw some light on manufacturing independent components developed for tanks for the Indian army?
Indeed, our production expertise extends to the manufacturing of intricate castings, specifically the cylinder block. The cylinder block can be likened to the foundation of an engine, serving as the structural core where various critical components are integrated. Within the confines of this block reside essential elements such as the crankshaft, connecting rods, pistons, and piston heads. Essentially, the cylinder block functions as a sturdy and pivotal enclosure, securely housing these vital components, akin to how a suitcase safeguards its contents during travel.
Our engines find application even in the most demanding and specialised fields, including their incorporation into rocket launchers utilised by the Indian defence sector.
What is Cooper Corporation’s new business focus and product lineup?
We stand poised to introduce a groundbreaking addition to our product portfolio: a state-of-the-art tractor emblematic of our commitment to technological advancement and forward-thinking.
Our strategic business direction now centres on expanding our market presence through engine exports to Southeast Asian nations and the US. Simultaneously, we are embarking on a significant product launch initiative, introducing tractors and diverse offerings spanning various industry verticals. These strategic endeavours broaden our horizons, seizing new opportunities, and enhancing our global footprint.
With EVs catching up, what are new avenues to explore and innovations that can accompany successful and cost-effective solutions?
EVs undoubtedly represent the future of transportation. The coexistence of various energy sources is a testament to consumers' diverse needs and preferences. Whether EVs, hydrogen-powered systems, diesel, or petrol engines, each has its distinct role in our evolving mobility landscape. Take, for example, the Indian railways, which initially pursued an all-electric strategy but later reconsidered this decision in favour of diesel power. This choice was driven by considerations such as return on investment and the existing infrastructure.
EV adoption has reached 7% in the US; however, this surge in EVs has strained the American power grid, prompting authorities to advise households to use their backup generators to supplement power for the grid, which, in turn, charges the EVs. This scenario underscores the importance of a multifaceted approach to energy sources.
Hydrogen, with its immense potential, emerges as a promising solution to address these challenges. We are actively engaged in developing hydrogen-based engines, recognising the significant advantages they offer in terms of sustainability and efficiency. As we navigate the complex landscape of transportation and energy, it’s evident that a harmonious coexistence of various technologies and fuels will be the key to a more sustainable and efficient future.