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The challenge

For big ambitions to thrive, a strong, resilient, lasting foundation is vital. In 2019, when the Mahansaria family embarked on a new off-highway tire manufacturing and distribution venture, it invested in a $100M 127-acre facility in Gujarat, India. The Mahansaria family is also investing $30M in a two-wheeler manufacturing plant in Gujarat, India. With three decades of manufacturing and entrepreneurial experience, the Mahansaria family had a vision to grow aggressively and expand globally. It also understood that to do so required rock-solid, future-proof business systems.

Mahansaria Group is aiming to take a massive bite out of the $26.4B global off-highway tire market. These deep-treaded, extra-durable tires provide high traction over rough surfaces for heavy equipment in industries such as agriculture and construction; they also are labor-intensive to produce. Vishal Barot, Chief Financial Officer at Mahansaria Tyres Private Limited, explained, “Manufacturing off-highway tires is comparatively complex: by the end of first year of commercial production, we have 250 SKUs in off-highway tires whereas same number would be ten to fifteen  for a passenger tire company, and we expect that number to multiply many times.”

To create robust, scalable business processes, the Mahansaria team developed an exhaustive list of functional and technical requirements for an ERP system and initiated a six-month evaluation process of five different solutions. Barot revealed, “Many of our employees had expertise with SAP, while Epicor is a comparatively new name in India. We were unsure whether Epicor Kinetic would be able to meet the needs of our business.”

Those concerns didn’t last long. Barot recalled, “The further we got into the assessment, the clearer it became that Epicor Kinetic was the right fit for us. It offered manufacturing expertise to handle complex processes, add-on functionality to grow with our business, and global capabilities. 

It became very obvious that Epicor delivered significant value-add above and beyond the standard ERP competencies offered by other vendors.

Resources to support complex manufacturing

“As a young company, we had many important and competing priorities. Epicor was extremely flexible in ramping up in stages to meet our growth, unlike other providers who mandated we do a full deployment before we were ready,” Barot shared.

Assisting with the implementation was Epicor partner Tru Group. Barot said, “Tru Group was especially helpful with the change management aspect – particularly with training – because many employees needed additional support to make the switch.” Today, Mahansaria employees appreciate the system.

As off-highway tire manufacturing is complicated, requiring many different manufacturing processes within one plant, each new customer order essentially requires the development of a new product. Barot noted, “The Product Configurator was a major factor in selecting Epicor since SAP didn’t offer anything comparable.”

He elaborated, “When a customer makes a new request, our R&D group has to create a bill of materials (BOM), which drives costing of a product and pricing and determines the specific manufacturing steps. With Product Configurator, our R&D group can create dynamic BOM with different recipes. Before Product Configurator, we used complicated Excel spreadsheets that introduced and perpetuated errors and created continuity issues.”

Barot added, “Epicor Kinetic enables us to standardize and automate our processes, eliminate errors and makes it easy to share information seamlessly across teams. We are able to take on more SKUs and to do it faster, setting the stage for us to meet our goal of moving from 250 SKUs today to 2,000 within seven to ten years.”

He continued, “Our CTO – an industry veteran who has worked for 30-plus years and having prior experience with SAP– explicitly commented to us that he felt that the Kinetic Product Configurator is a significant benefit to our business. This was a very telling statement.”

Epicor Kinetic has enabled us to standardize our processes, eliminate errors and make it easy to share information seamlessly across our teams. We are able to take on more SKUs and to do it faster – setting the stage for us to meet our goal of moving from 250 SKUs today to 2,000 within seven to ten years.

Increased efficiency and productivity through automation

Mahansaria Group has another strategic goal: to become a paperless business. Barot observed, “The Epicor Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution is helping us accelerate our paperless objective.”

Before deploying Epicor ECM, documents would move in print form from desk to desk; an inefficient, unsecured, and unreliable method of doing business. Barot shared, “Epicor ECM integrates seamlessly with Epicor Kinetic to provide workflow management as well as version and access control, which is especially important for the security of confidential data.” He continued, “When our CTO approves a BOM, it now cascades automatically down to the production teams.”

Mahansaria Group also appreciates that Epicor ECM enables all relevant documents to be amassed and connected to an individual workflow element, a capability that SAP didn’t offer. Barot explained, “We can upload all associated documentation – from POs and supplier invoices to signed customer invoices – so everything is accessible to everyone, irrespective of location. This was obviously a big benefit during the COVID work-from-home protocols.”

This capability automatically creates an easy-to-follow audit trail, eliminating the need to manage boxes of files, and simultaneously keeping the cost of an audit low because everything is organized and available online.

Epicor has added maximum value to our business by offering the most valuable ERP solution for a manufacturing company, especially one with complex processes like ours. I regularly have CFOs from other organizations calling to ask my opinion about Epicor versus SAP and my response is always the same: We deliberately picked Epicor over SAP – it’s an extremely good product that is tangibly helping us grow faster.

A partner to recommend

With a proven system in place, Mahansaria Group is in the process of rolling out Epicor Kinetic and Epicor ECM to its U.S subsidiary and later to their European-based subsidiary. Barot said, “Epicor Kinetic has the global scope to match our aspirations. For instance, it can accommodate country-specific specifications, control and governance requirements, and compliance mandates far better than the other offerings that we evaluated. This will enable us to scale quickly to meet our most aggressive targets.”

The Mahansaria team also is working on expanding its business intelligence capabilities using Epicor. Barot admitted, “Today, we are only utilizing about a quarter of the Epicor platform’s potential. As we continue to identify and test the capabilities, we are able to use the analytics and dashboard functionalities to deliver real-time, actionable insights to our teams and drive increased accountability.”

Barot summarized, “Epicor has added maximum value to our business by offering the most valuable ERP solution for a manufacturing company, especially one with complex processes like ours. I regularly have CFOs from other organizations calling to ask my opinion about Epicor versus SAP and my response is always the same: We deliberately picked Epicor over SAP – it’s an extremely good product that is tangibly helping us grow faster.”

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Company Facts

  • Location: Mumbai, India
  • Specialist Industry: Plastics and Rubber Products Manufacturing
  • Website: www.ascensotyres.com

Challenges

  • Creation of a robust, future ready and global solution to match growth objectives
  • Need to support and enhance complex manufacturing processes without additional overhead
  • Inability to accelerate paperless business goal
  • Business intelligence needed to deliver actionable insights and drive accountability

Benefits

  • Frictionless growth enabled by modern, purpose-built-for-manufacturing, and integrated Product Configurator
  • Faster, error-free, collaborative, and secure workflows and digitized files created through automated content management solution
  • Global expansion enabled through ease of scaling and replication across organization
  • Supports complex manufacturing with ease, is flexible and scalable, enables the proliferation of SKUs from 250 to 2000 to support business growth plans
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