In what direction is the industrial sector moving towards – elaborate on DuPont’s growth trajectory in India over the past three years?
Over the past three years, we were undergoing a transformation as part of the global DowDuPont merger and separation. Today, we are a new DuPont with leading market positions in four core markets and strong geographic, customer and end-market diversification. Talking about India, we have a deep association with the country. In fact, we’ve been providing our highly engineered products and specialized solutions to several important industries like energy, safety & security, infrastructure, health & nutrition. Looking forward, India continues to remain a strategic growth market for us. Although the country is facing strong economic headwinds, especially given the slowdown in automotive and smartphone markets, we continue to have confidence in the country’s growth. If you see, today, the government is majorly focused on improving infrastructure, and access to healthcare, food and clean water across the country. And this is creating new opportunities for us, because, we believe, we can apply our science and expertise to understand customers’ evolving requirements and deliver sustainable solutions across various end-markets.
Could you elaborate on DuPont’s involvement in the automobile, food and beverage, wastewater treatment, and in the pharmaceutical sector?
With regard to the automobile industry, we are the preferred partner and solutions provider for the challenging needs of the Indian automotive industry. From safety and high-performance to light-weighting and durability, our collaborative market-driven mobility solutions help Indian automotive players increase efficiency and address challenges related to fuel-efficiency, thermal management and emissions. Within the food and beverage sector in India, we work with the entire food value chain in the areas of child and family nutrition, weight management as well as improved food safety. We collaborate with customers to help improve shelf-life, taste, texture and nutritional benefits of their products across the dairy, beverage and bakery industry. For example, offerings for the Indian market include cultures for a consistent yoghurt production at an industrial scale, nutritious products made with soy protein, healthy and tasty ice-cream solutions, freshness in ready-to-eat rotis, rich taste as well as texture for biscuits, other bakery applications and snacks tailored to local tastes. Also, our water solutions business segment provides state-of-the-art membrane science and ion exchange solutions that help make drinking water safer and cleaner for homes and communities; help industries and markets operate more effectively, efficiently, and sustainably; and make water-scarcity challenges more manageable, wherever they arise. For example, we work with Textile industry customers in India to offer an end-to-end portfolio
We work with customers around the world to develop the broadest portfolio of advanced pharmaceutical ingredients and excipients. Our solutions for tablets, capsules and suspensions help modern medicine meet consumer demand for better health.
What is DuPont’s investment in Research and Development? What are the stressors within the Indian market?
We invest significantly in R&D to innovate solutions to address some of the complex challenges facing the world. Globally, about 4% of sales (i.e. $900 million annually) is spent on R&D to develop highly-differentiated products and market-driven solutions. As per reports, the world’s population is projected to increase from 7 to 9 billion by the year 2050. This means that the world will have more people to feed and they will demand access to clean water and more energy to meet their transportation and other needs. Consistent with this, India’s needs to are growing. So, while these are unprecedented challenges, to us these are opportunities. Because as a science-based innovation company, we believe we can play an important role in developing sustainable solutions to address some of these challenges facing India and the world.
Could you elaborate on the technological changes made in the past three years to your product portfolio offerings? Which sectors do you cater to more?
The new DuPont is focused on providing technology-based solutions across industries like energy, safety & security, infrastructure, health & nutrition. We have four different businesses — Nutrition & Biosciences, Transportation & Industrial, Safety & Construction and Electronics & Imaging. And in India, all four businesses offer immense opportunities for pursuing growth. Within the nutrition and biosciences sector, our N&B business is a world leader in providing innovative and sustainable solutions for the food, beverage, dietary supplement and pharmaceutical industries. We also use pioneering biotechnology to enable bio-based solutions that make industrial processes more efficient and sustainable. Net sales: $6.2 billion. Within the transportation and industrial sector, our T&I business provides high-performance engineering resins, adhesives, and lubricants to enable material systems solutions for the most demanding applications and environments, including aerospace, automotive, medical devices, energy production, and more. Net sales: $5.4 billion*
Within the scope of safety and construction, from the first responders, industrial workers to clean water, buildings and transportation — our S&C business provides protective materials, building solutions and clean water technology to keep people safe and operations running smoothly. Net sales: $5.3 billion* Also, within the electronics and the imaging sector – our E and I business provides leading technologies to enable smaller, smarter and easier electronics to help transform the sun’s rays into clean energy and bring high-quality printing to packaging and textiles.
Looking ahead, we continue to be excited about the longer-term growth opportunity from areas such as light-weighting and the electrification of vehicles, healthy living as well as an ageing population, and demand for clean water, and our portfolio is well-positioned to deliver value for all.
What are the emerging market trends across sectors – how do you as a science-based company align to innovation being made within the industry?
As a science-based innovation company, we want to align with attractive, high-growth market trends – particularly health and wellness, advanced mobility, connectivity and sustainability – where our customer-driven innovation and value-added solutions play a transformational role. Below are some of the high-growth opportunities aligned to global megatrends:
Example: 5G – needed for high-speed data and enabling new services
The industry is looking to transition to 5G – the next high-speed wireless communications standard for bringing increased communication speeds, lower latency and support greater user density. This could drive increased demand for advanced materials at both infrastructure and user device levels. (Large opportunity – $6B market by 2026 with 50% CAGR). We are working with smartphone OEMs and Tier 1 players and, together, are developing innovative material solutions especially for antenna splits and connectors that are enabling the roll-out of early 5G-compatible smartphones.
Health and wellness
Example: Microbiome – transforming the role of microbes in human and animal health
Microorganism has been associated with positive health effects in animals and humans. As the healthcare industry is moving towards ‘preventive-care’ as opposed to ‘sick-care’, there is a rising trend to use microbiomes to help humans and animals’ function more optimally and adapt more rapidly to changing the environment. (Large opportunity – $5B market with 20% CAGR). We’ve Leading capabilities in microbial biotechnology and health & nutrition science which allows large scale fermentation and formulation for live microbes & biomolecules. We recently built world-class microbiome research and product development facility. Now supplying a third of the world’s probiotics, we’re poised to transform our approach to healthy nutrition.
Example: Auto electrification – enabling reduction of vehicle emissions
The global transportation industry is changing. More electric vehicles will be produced in the next several years, and OEMs are focusing on electrification as a key strategy. By 2050, 4 of every 5 cars sold worldwide will be battery-electric. (Large opportunity – $6B market with 10% CAGR)
We have leadership in providing solutions in light-weighting, battery pack components and assemblies, thermal management/safety, electric motors, powertrain/chassis and electronic applications for improved automation/driver assists/self-driving capabilities. Our unique initiative – AHEAD (Accelerating Hybrid-Electric Autonomous Driving), uses our materials science and electronics expertise to provide a broad/differentiated portfolio of technology and solutions for the e-mobility market. In all three areas, we are uniquely positioned to apply our scientific expertise and innovation capability to drive value for all.
How does DuPont aim to create a competitive advantage within the scope of sustainability?
One of the key ways we create a competitive advantage with sustainability is through our local R&D capabilities. For example, our regional application development lab (The DuPont Knowledge Center (DKC)) in Hyderabad boasts of highly qualified scientists and engineers who work closely with customers as well as other locations across the globe to address their unique challenges. Additionally, we continue to engage with suppliers, customers, and other members of the value chain through our Innovation Centre located in Gurgaon. It is the platform for customers, governments, universities, and other strategic partners to collaborate with us to solve both regional and global issues, many of which relate to energy efficiency, food and sustainability. So, to drive growth, we will continue to leverage our unique world‐class science, technology and engineering capabilities, deep understanding of markets and value chains, and research collaborations across industries. To give an example, we work closely with the Indian automotive industry to address some of their challenging needs around making vehicles lighter and more fuel-efficient. We develop innovative solutions across eight automotive themes: Sustainability; Alternative Drive; Light weighting; Improved Performance; Powertrain Efficiency; Total System Cost; Safety; and Comfort and Design. Together, we help them with the right solutions to build cleaner, energy-efficient vehicles that people love to drive.