Cold Chain Transport in India – KONVEKTA


Konvekta AG was established in Germany six decades ago. The company is involved in manufacturing thermo systems for commercial vehicles and also bus air-conditioning. The units are manufactured and assembled in Germany and sold in national and international markets. Mr. Klaus Best, Head of Transport Refrigeration Department, Konvekta AG, Germany, and Mr. Kamalaksha Naik, General Manager – Operations, Konvekta Refrigeration India Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, India, share the segment observations.

Mr. Klaus Best, Head of Transport Refrigeration Department, Konvekta AG


Brief us your manufacturing program, salient product features & the recent developments.

We manufacture units to be used for various purpose in different sizes. Our R&D Department is very active in improving the performance of units as well as innovating new technology in the field. We believe in improving the performance of our products in line with the need of our customers. Konvekta Refrigeration India Pvt. Ltd. is a joint venture between a UAE-based Co. and Konvekta AG, Germany. We are involved in importing the units and selling them in Indian market. We also provide timely after sale service to our customers.

All of our reefer units run on vehicle power. The most popular models are TK 2955, TK 3950 (for frozen) FK 2755 (for chilled). The compressor is mounted on the engine of the vehicle and runs with engine power and necessary power for controls, all fans and relay is taken from the battery.

Highlight your product USPs, after sales service & technical support to body builders/end customers.

Customers prefer refrigeration systems with proven track record with regard to efficiency and reliability to avoid potential loss. Our units are unique in performance, multipurpose with low breakdown ratio, cater all kind of needs. We believe very strongly that after sales service is most important factor to gain/retain market share. We will have service partners available in the vicinity of any sale to provide timely service facility any time.

Body builders (container manufacturers) and OEMs are our majority sale points and we have a very close synergy for sales and close cooperation with them. In case the end customer is from our side, we co-ordinate with the container manufacturer/OEMs for any specific requirements and get the same done as per the need.

Tell us the reefer vehicle market size and the plans to increase your share in future.

The current market size for reefer vehicles is around INR 1,800 Cr. to INR 2,000 Cr. With great initiative from The Central and State Governments for use of reefer vehicles to transport the perishable items to avoid wastage of food and proposed subsidiary from the Governments we anticipate a growth rate of 10 to 15% per annum. We anticipate an increase in market size for reefer to INR 3,000 Cr to INR 3,500 Cr.

With the BS-IV and GST behind, how do you see the demand for reefer vehicles shaping up?

GST rate for refrigeration is expected to reduce from 28% to 18%. However, despite of the taxation which has increased the price level of units considerably the demand for the units expected to increase as forecasted. The reason for stability is because the reefer has become a necessity due to climate change and to avoid wastage. Even though the user incurs one-time expense the same is recovered over a period of time by eliminating the wastage which results in increase in the income.

Mr. Kamalaksha Naik, General Manager – Operations, Konvekta Refrigeration India Pvt. Ltd.

Comment on technology impact over the reefer vehicle and the refrigeration unit.

Adopting new technology for improvement in performance is an ongoing process. Due to the F-gas-regulations the prices for R134a and especially for R404A are rising. Some producers like Honeywell already announced a production stop of R404A. This will force a change to R452A for some years. After 5 to 10 years the next change of refrigerant from R452A will be necessary. Konvekta is developing innovative systems with the refrigerant CO2. Besides the environment friendliness the advantages are an improvement in energy efficiency and very low cost for the refrigerant CO2. Our organization has an able R&D Department who help us to be in line with developments globally and market requirements

What are the growth drivers for cold chain transport and specifically the reefer vehicles? 

The growth drivers for the sector are following:

* Increase in requirements of Super Market chains and food processing companies.

* Urbanization.

* Increasing awareness about use of temperature controlled vehicles in Agriculture / Horticulture sector to avoid wastage will surge in demand for reefer vehicles.

* Dairy is another sector with huge requirement of reefer units to transport milk and other related products.

* Initiative from the Central and State Governments to use reefer containers/trucks to transport perishable products to avoid wastage of food items resulting in loss for formers and dealers.