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IESW 2023: Naveen Goudar, Managing Director, India - Atotech Group | Interview

"As a technology-agnostic upstream solutions company, MKS Atotech is ready for the clean energy epoch, but the real question, are the battery manufacturers and other clean energy players including those in solar and hydrogen space ready to work with us in the same pace as we are?", asked Naveen Goudar, Managing Director, India - Atotech Group, in his exclusive interaction with ETN's Dhiyanesh Ravichandran at the floors of the India Energy Storage Week (IESW) 2023 held last week. 


Naveen Goudar

How is IESW 2023? Tell us about your presence here at the expo.

We are super excited in the show, second time consecutively. IESW this time has grown bigger than last edition, and we have learnt a lot since then. Last edition was more of an eye-opener for us, just when the ACC-PLI scheme was announced. Now, since we had some time to understand the scheme, its feasibilities, and possibilities, we have come a long way, and in a better spirit at the show this time to connect and interact with the visitors and customers.

How has the Indian battery industry transformed post the announcement of ACC-PLI scheme?

It's difficult to say pre-PLI and post-PLI, it's the demand in the market that matters. The scheme is one more milestone in the country's journey in electrification and catalyzes the whole process of EV adoption and cell manufacturing. It made us ask ourselves certain critical questions. Cell and battery module making is not the final product, but the upstream is of immense significance.

For instance, investments on module assembly line can be made, but what about the chemicals, manufacturing processes, and making 'for India' by localizing and creating a local supply chain. These questions are slowly getting answered day by day. We are very happy to be part of this whole evolution. There is certainly higher levels of interests and optimism in the market post the PLI scheme that gives us confidence and expand our R&D and manufacturing footprint in India.

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Tell us about MKS Atotech's product and technology portfolio for clean energy sector.

MKS Atotech is a technology-agnostic upstream solutions company, with advanced solutions for thermal management, electrical conductivity, electronics manufacturing, precision manufacturing, and so on. As leaders in surface finish coating and electroplating, our solutions for performance and protection enhancement of materials and batteries modules. We also provide solutions for electrical conductivity and thermal insulation and offer critical precision instruments for cell and battery manufacturing. Further, as a critical chemical supplier, we are providing critical chemicals that help make battery manufacturing easier.

How is MKS Atotech geared up to the emerging new epoch of clean energy in India?

The PLI and electrification is just a new opportunity, not the only opportunity. We consider energy storage and energy generation in holistic sense, which also includes sunrise sectors like solar power and green hydrogen. For instance, we are ready with customized solutions for solar modules and have developed bipolar plating and coating solutions for the hydrogen production systems.

Our cutting-edge solutions are market-sensitive to be successful. We have established an advanced R&D center in India to work with manufacturers and innovators to make this the transition to clean energy easy and effective. So, we are certainly ready for the clean energy epoch, but the real question, are the battery manufacturers and other clean energy players ready to work with us in the same pace as we are?

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