Sustainability at Roca means people, plants and performance
Roca Bathroom Products India Limited has eight manufacturing locations and five brands in the country and is the fastest growing company in the bathroom space
Roca began its activity as a company that made cast iron radiators for domestic heating at its factory in Gavà, near Barcelona. After these first radiators, the firm expanded its portfolio with the production of boilers. In 1929, Roca entered the bathroom space. In the 90s, the Group developed a first step of international expansion, mainly based on setting up commercial branches and signing agreements with local leading brands. Besides Portugal and France, Roca’s presence started to spread over the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Russia, Morocco, Argentina, Brazil and China.
In 2007, Roca Group came into a JV with the Chennai-based Murugappa Group and by 2010, Parryware, India’s leading sanitaryware brand, became a 100 per cent subsidiary of the Roca Group. The expertise and revolutionary R&D technology of Roca and customer trust of Parryware proved to be a potent force and has helped both the brands to grow and challenge their respective competitors like never before.
Roca Bathroom Products India Limited has eight manufacturing locations and five brands in the country and is the fastest growing company in the bathroom space. It also has the highest market share of around 36 per cent and globally, it is about 10 per cent of Roca’s revenue. “In India, we have around 3,000 employees and operate out of Chennai and Gurgaon. We occupy all the segments of the market pyramid and have reputed clientele, from Marriott, Radisson, Hyatt, IHG and Hilton to ITC, Taj and Lemon Tree,” says KE Ranganathan, Managing Director, Roca Bathroom Products Pvt Ltd. He adds the company passed through the Covid19 tunnel in 2020 and in 2021, returned with an all-time high revenue for the period. “We hope the trend continues,” he says.
“The technology landscape in a bathroom has undergone a lot of evolution over the last few decades. The current one is termed as 6.0 because Roca first defined the bathroom space back in 1917 and is doing so even now, over a 100 years later,” says Ranganathan.
Talking about technology in the bathroom and where it can be deployed, the Roca Bathroom Products’ MD says that if one looks at digital technology, the faucets, urinals and toilets have become electronic. “Water dispensation is controlled to reduce wastage as also touch-free atmosphere has been introduced during the period of the pandemic. Every hotel and restaurant wants to now move to an electronic basin tub to begin with if not anything else. No one wants to touch anything for they are scared,” he shares.
Explaining it further, Ranganathan says technical intervention has reached a level where the temperature in a shower can be programmed so when one enters the bathroom and say his or her name, the digital system takes over and gives water at exactly the same temperature he wants it to be. “We, at Roca, have revolutionised it. In fact, Roca recently bought a technology company so that they can integrate their technology into their bathrooms. We also collaborate with hotels to make sure the consumption of water is reduced and there is least possible wastage. Predominantly, Roca occupies design space and some of world’s biggest designers have designed products for Roca,” he puts in. Whether it is technology, design, hygiene, water conservation, innovation are all bundled and offered to the clients.
To increase its market share in the hospitality industry, the Group has formed separate sales team. “Apart from that, we offer a range of products for five star hotels to seven star hotels to three star hotels, to suit budgets and requirements. For example, if you go to a Hilton, some rooms will have an Armani Roca, others just a Roca else a combination of Parryware products. Wherever possible, we give them a mix and match,” says Ranganathan. He adds that no other brand in India offers as fantastic an installation support as Roca. We have a battalion of technicians who go to a hotel during the installation process to ensure there are no errors at any stage,” he puts in.
The organisation, in its network, has 50,000 plumbers in India who are at your doorsteps at the click of a mouse. “It is the largest plumbing technician network in the world. During the pandemic, we got a lot of enquiries for renovations as occupancies at hotels were low. We utilised the period and offered tailor-made products for faster installation,” avers Ranganathan. Another important point which the Managing Director of Roca Bathroom Products Pvt Ltd draws attention towards is that the company doesn’t sell and forget.
On how Roca helps the hospitality industry in sustainability initiatives, Carlos Velazquez, Director of Sustainability, ROCA Group, says, “We offer products to meet their needs. For us, it is about wellbeing and water. For example, we place aerators in faucets to reduce water consumption. In Dual Flush, used water goes to a reservoir from the washbasin which is then used to flush the toilet.”
Velazquez adds sustainability in Roca means people, plants and performance. “We are not ashamed to say we want profitability for we will not be able to help people and the planet if we don’t earn profits. We created eight initiatives: decarbonisation, sustainable materials, sustainable products, people, society, supply chain, sustainable logistics and sustainability promotion for the same. The impact we have done with the We Are Water Foundation is for everyone to see,” he says.
He adds that Roca Group applies its expertise in water and sanitation to support people. “We promote the culture of water and help communities in building wells, pumps, solar panels, irrigation systems, toilets in schools and hospitals. We restore ponds and rivers too. The idea is to help people in close communities to have access to water and sanitation,” he says.
This article was published in BW hotelier issue dated '' with cover story titled 'MARCH-APRIL 2022 F&B SPECIAL'
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