L&T – sharp focus on profitable businesses..
- 6.5 million sq.ft of world-class IT and ITeS facilities
- a million sq.ft of residential space
OVER CLOSE TO eight decades, the large business con- glomerate, L&T, evolved as a strong construction major as also a manufacturer of a variety of capital goods and sophis- ticated engineering products. Apart from the expats, L&T’s Indian leaders in the initial stages like C R Ramakrishnan and A Ramakrishna, developed rich capabilities for the construction of buildings and iconic projects, not just in India but in a number of neighbouring countries. These ranged from airports to railway projects, roads, bridges and buildings, factories seaports, sports stadia…
The success of L&T helped dozens of entrepreneurs to enter and prosper in the infrastructure and construction sectors.
In the initial decades L&T also had a large share of its operations focused on manufacturing. The boom in steel plant construction during the Second Plan helped L&T specialise the manufacture of steel plant equipment. Its Kansbahal Works near Rourkela excelled in the fabrication of a vast range of such equipment. L&T also acquired capabilities for the production of a vast range of capital equipment for cement mills, paper mills… The company also set up large facilities for the production of tyres, industrial valves…
Chairman A M Naik focused on sharper core competence. A major decision of his was to hive off large cement manufacturing and ready-mix concrete businesses to the Birlas. This masterstroke helped in preserving the auto- nomy of L&T as a prestigious, non-family controlled Indian business conglomerate. A vast number of manufacturing activities that did not yield high margins, were closed down/ phased out. The recent one is the electrical and automation division to Schneider Electric. The focus was sharp on infrastructure and construction as also on several hi-tech sectors like defence production.
The closure of factories, especially in or near metros, has come as a boon. The factories of L&T McNeil and Audco valves, opposite the sprawling offices of L&T Construction at Manapakkam, were spread over 40 acres. With real estate prices zooming and with the strengths of L&T in developing real estate, this vast expanse of land has come in handy for development. L&T Realty is working on the construction of 6.5 million sq.ft of world-class IT and ITeS facilities and a million sq.ft of residential space, termed L&T Innovation Campus.
The first phase is expected to be ready by mid 2022.