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Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... An inexplicable neglect Should we change the official year? GNS - 100: our first subscriber Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Streamlining mandatory third party cover Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai Sri Lanka votes for change Where a state respects its litterateurs… Banning booze... Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Why land prices zoom in TN? Pharma – overdose of copying Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Muffled voices for merit… GM Technology at last! Nuclear power at the nucleus TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Preserving for the future Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Another Indian music maestro at the UN Haul over the coal A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Music happens PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals EVM is tamper-proof Tax agriculture The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Road development slows down EEC at the National Media Centre When small is no larger beautiful.. Tribute – M V Murugappan The rise and fall of Annamalai University Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Breaththrough in malaria control Solar thermal shines… Russi Mody – a tribute Building loyalty through the stomach A proud Madrasi Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Quality silica from Neyveli Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Delhi is distant A friendly business group Mersal magnified For whom the MIDS bell tolls? IAS invades NDDB... Making ‘my Amaravati’... Sweeter prospects for sugar Delhi returns to BJP An enemy’s enemy is a friend No Maha Koottani in TN... WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Tatas moving out of urea production... Editor's Notes Modi storms Silicon Valley No engine for this car CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. A glass full of corruption When Ratan Tata visited SRM Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Put expensive assets created to use... Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V Silver Years of Madras Musings More Shakti to resource mobilisation... The why of tax incentives When online building permits work…. Make standards certification mandatory... No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu Why this malaise in medical education? Mu Sigma – is no more Roaring Ro-Ro facility CII projects higher growth… Come elections, come advertisements... A yen for wastage… Tribute Plummeting profits of PSBs Delhi Chalo... Tough task taking states together to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines Paytm karo... London, London Narayan The balancing act Engineering seats go abegging Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! The rise and rise of KCP Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel Fuel for thought L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Towards speedy justice PC’s preference for professionals Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... 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Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research The Swadeshi Trump A welcome initiative by the judiciary Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu The few handicaps... L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Demise of a media baron... The sea- saw battle continues... A think tank for Chennai …and of a popular trade leader Fortune for Indian Airlines Multi-faceted Venkat Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Maximising the micro pricing … Revving up the manufacturing sector Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel TELANGANA at last…BUT Discoms deserve better… Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Valli, they are more marginalised F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing China invests in India Secularism and anti-Hinduism TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership When nations steal growth from one another… IPL - no surprise this scam Cement prices continue to rise… More tributes to GR CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... The Gulf aviation boom He continues the focus on social amelioration Shipping woes of Chennai companies Welcome focus on core competence ONGC at KG Basin Auto components surge… Poor quality of university VCs He saved millions from starvation... IPL type auction for VCs? Shale gas and its shallow future A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Build close rapport with business leaders Readers' Mail The power-full Hindujas Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? Kinetic Karnataka All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya The nuclear option Which side are you, Montek? Contrarian cousins Wise Presidents Medical costs hit the roof... Convulsions in The Hindu The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... Small units prefers to remain small... S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Gay abandon in pricing A more liberated TN… Shanti and Sadhana through Music Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy TGS- The king storyteller When the President was rendered homeless… Rahman at CIC Remembering Indira Sivasailam... How Air-India loses customs... Gas is the way forward Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Boy, can you beat these? S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist Revive development banks... Things happen by accident and not by design... Airlines in India: cost and space Welcome GST A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Tatas moving out of urea production... Modi and the lady TIAM turns a full cycle Sweet news for TN sugar mills Protest masters... Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ More heat than light Funding the un-funded Where is Rajaji? Intellectual of rare qualities Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami A professional at the helm of IRDA... Strengthen the base... Parliament in paralysis... Quality education through the PPP mode Adharma of opposition politics Delhi is distant… Align crops to agro climate endowments… Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi West Bengal: mindless malignancy Polls and promises Return to king coal for urea... Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Wanted: a second airport for Chennai SoA @ 80 Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad The brown list of Venkitaramanan Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Robber barons everywhere Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Vibrant Gujarat Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL B H Kothari - a tribute Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Kulandai was a giant Noble nonagenarians... Five star activism stalls development activity Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik
 
TIAM turns a full cycle

Tube Investments of India Ltd (referred to as TIAM), part of the Murugappa Group, pioneered the production of bicycles in the south six decades ago. Set up in collaboration with prestigious British companies like Tube Investments, Brampton Fittings, Wright Saddles… TI Cycles produced branded bicycles in higher value ranges. Along with Tube Products and TI Metal Sections, the Murugappa Group emerged a leader in the light engineering sector.

Its contemporaries, Sen and Pandit which manufactured Raleigh, Rudge and Humber brands of cycles and Hind Cycles, the oldest bicycle unit set up by the Birlas, turned sick, were nationalised and later closed down. TIAM changed its track, adjusted to emerging market needs, focused on high-end bicycles and became a leader in this segment. A recent annual report of TII referred to identifying ‘new class of consumers fast taking to the turf of cycling, health, recreation, environmental sensitivity, community of like-minded people’ as the new generation growth drivers. While the demand for conventional products stagnated or grew very slow (at 2 per cent last year), TI Cycles’ sales recorded a growth of 6 per cent resulting in increased revenue from cycles and components to Rs 1314 crore (Rs 1185 crore in 2013-14).

The company has manufacturing plants in Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra. A new bicycle plant is under construction at Rajpura, Punjab to cater to the Northern and Eastern markets.  I remember the acute competition faced by TIAM, Sen, Pandit and Hind Cycles, having their plants respectively at Chennai, Kolkata and Mumbai, from Hero Cycles, Avon Cycles and Road Master Industries in Punjab and Atlas Cycles in Haryana. The northern companies could offer bicycles with comparable quality at much cheaper prices. This eventually led to the closure of two of these. Even TIAM remained closed in the late 1960s for over 10 months.  

M V Subbiah, then heading the operations of TI Cycles in 1960s, re-structured the operations: phased out the costlier production of components, saddles… focused on higher end products and turned around the company. I remember the initial disdain of procuring components from Punjab on quality considerations. But soon, TI opened shop at Faridabad; in recent years it has been procuring components from China, now busy constructing a modern plant at Rajpura! A full cycle has been turned!

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