API territory focus: India

Over the past few years India has emerged as one of the most rapidly developing nations in the world. Boasting the world’s second fastest growing economy, with projections indicating that by the year 2025 it will be approximately 60 per cent of the size of the US economy, it is little wonder that India appears to be drawing a significant degree of attention from the pro audio community on a global scale.

The increasing prominence of India as one of the industry’s key territories has been no more apparent than in the huge success of the annual PALME India event held in Mumbai; a three-day event, in which thousands of visitors from across the globe converge to both witness and exhibit the latest in technological innovation.

The success of the event has been further fuelled by the nation’s vast film industry, as well as the growing development of modern mass transit systems, and an increase in the number of places of worship due to an increasing multi-religious society. Each of these has served as contributing factors in the pro audio industry’s acknowledgement of India as not only a key territory for the present, but also for the future.

With this in mind, it is no surprise that a number of companies have enjoyed a great deal of success in India recently due to its status as an emerging market. One such company is UK-based specialist distribution manager Paxt, which deals with a variety of brands on behalf of premium manufacturers. Its 27 years of experience in emerging markets has seen Paxt garner a reputation for developing distribution channels and gaining market share for its clients. 

Premier Industrial Importers, Paxt’s appointed distributor, has played a key role in achieving market growth for the XTA brand in India. Describing them as “The Rolls Royce of processors,” Kiran Sanghavi, managing director of Premier is proud to provide XTA to the installation and rental market, citing the growth in market share as being as much about the high build quality as the value offered by XTA in such a price conscious market. 

“There are competitors in the market, such as KT, Lake and DBX, but the 4 series audio management processors DP448, DP446, DP426 and also the DS800 Mic/Line distribution processor have proved to be mainstays in the market and now the power offered by the DP548 is also taking hold,” he comments.

One of the more recent high profile XTA projects has been with Indian reality TV show Big Boss. The Big Brother-style show utilises 13 DS 800s and one DP426. According to Denis Menezes of M/S RGB Vision, the rental house providing sound for the show, "No reality show is complete without XTA products. Because of the premium quality build, excellent audio quality, highly reliable and user-friendly products, XTA are the preferred choice for most of the sound engineers in Bollywood. Also the efficient service and cooperation provided by Premier is adding an additional attraction to using XTA."

XTA’s sales and marketing director Bill Woods agrees: “As a manufacturer we really rely on our distribution to maximise opportunities for our brand. Premier Industrial Importers have been doing a great job for us in India for a number of years and, Paxt is quite correct, the potential for growth from this developing market is huge.”

Manufacturers of high-end audio solutions Alcons Audio has also set out to make the most of the opportunities on offer, having opened a direct office presence in India to provide customers with full factory support. The Dutch company will be operating out of Mumbai and Bangalore initially, with expansion planned to other cities in the near future. “Having successfully established our American presence, India is the next step. It is an important growth market – like Brazil, China, US and Europe – and since we didn’t have a distribution presence here we have set up a direct office,” said co-founder and managing director Tom Back.

Alcons will be pitching its ‘Evolutionary Audio Solutions’ in India primarily to the touring systems, installed sound and cinema market segments. Its range of line arrays for touring systems includes the new LR24, which completes Alcons’ size range of systems, being ideal for large concerts and events requiring professional sound systems.

The company is also focussed on installed sound systems in clubs, bars, hotels and places of worship. “India has a rich cinema tradition and we have the optimal products for this,” added Back. “Developments like 3D and Digital cinema have enhanced the cinematic experience and Alcons’ Cinemarray cinema systems generate a sound quality equally superior. Together they create a whole new level of cinematic experience.”

Currently operating in India and the Middle East is Mumbai-based Entech Productions, which has capitalised on the emerging nature of the Indian market. Supplying solutions to meet almost any requirement, from basic equipment rental, to complex system integration projects, Entech Productions serves a range of markets, including concert touring, corporate events, trade shows and special events. For any given market the company can provide a single discipline, such as lighting, audio or video, or, alternatively, it can combine disciplines for an integrated solution.

Also based in India is high-end distributor Modi Digital. Having been in the industry for 30 years, the company serves as an exclusive distributor in the territory for such brands as Audio-Technica, SPL and HHB. Furthermore, Modi Digital also works closely with a number of freelance engineers and designers, with whom it co-operates and designs high-end studios.

So, with its ever-increasing emergence as one of the industry’s most prominent territories, due to the growing success of the PALME India event, along with the country’s rapidly expanding economy, India certainly looks set to enjoy a prosperous and eventful future in both the world of pro audio and the entertainment industry as a whole.