A. O. Smith announced plans to locate the headquarters of its A. O. Smith India Water Heating Private Limited venture in Bangalore and begin construction of a residential water heater manufacturing plant. A. O. Smith said it is the first U. S. water heater business to enter the India market.
Design work on the 76,000 sq ft facility will begin in the fourth quarter; construction is scheduled for completion in 2Q 2010. The plant will initially employ approximately 100 employees, according to Ajita G. Rajendra, president of A. O. Smith Water Products Company.
"We selected Bangalore for a number of strategic reasons," he pointed out. "The city is centrally located in one of our key target markets in India with a growing consumer class interested in premium water heating solutions. The local infrastructure will be able to support our distribution needs."
The plant and India corporate offices will be located on 20 acres in the Harohalli Karnataka Industrial Area just outside of Bangalore. The manufacturing operation will be designed to assemble glass-lined residential water heaters in sizes ranging from six liters up to 100 liters.
In the initial phase, the plant will purchase pre-painted steel components for water heater jackets. Plans call for plant expansions as the business grows to including jacket and tank fabrication and painting. Once the facility is fully built out, it will be a fully integrated residential water heater operation, Rajendra said.
The plant also will manufacture co-branded products for Jaquar Company, PLC, one of the leading suppliers to the sanitary channels in India. A. O. Smith and Jaguar reached a marketing agreement in July.
to Daily News