With the evolving needs of regional management, Emerson Network Power is transitioning to dedicate and focus on growth in its specific organisations within the Asia-Pacific. ARN spoke to the company’s new president of the Asia market, Anand Sanghi, about his recent promotion, company strategy and recent acquisitions.
You were recently promoted to the newly created role as president of the Asia market at Emerson Network Power. What was the reason behind the creation of this role?
Anand Sanghi (AS): We started working through the business and realised the Asian market is vast and required a few dedicated and focused organisations within the large geography. The one large management was split into three big blocks – China, India and Asia-Pacific, which includes A/NZ, SEA, Japan and Korea. As part of the transition, we decided to work through it and ended up with the structure we have today; for each of these sub-geographies within the region, there is now a dedicated president. My first job in 1994 was with Copeland in Hong Kong, now part of Emerson Climate Technologies, as a business planner. I moved to the corporate office in 1999 as a director of planning and business development, became head of planning, product management, service and marketing for Emerson Network Power in 2001 and now have taken up this position based in Manila.
The company recently acquired Avocent and Chloride. How have these acquisitions positioned the company for further growth?
AS: Both of these acquisitions are strategic to Emerson and one of my key tasks is to make sure we work on integrating these acquisitions smoothly and successfully into the network business within the region and driving the delivery of value of these acquisitions to our customers. Chloride has some of the most energy-efficient UPSs in the world and together with our Emerson Power networks, the Chloride acquisition has given us that lead in Australia. The Avocent acquisition is more forward-looking. It has positioned us for a segment which is called datacentre infrastructure management and this is an emerging need for today. Many people claim to do something in this space but nobody is able to deliver what the customer wants in improving the efficiency of the datacentre operations, identifying a new capacity or optimising the power in cooling infrastructures. All of these require a lot more tools to be able to plan the datacentre, remotely control and manage it. So we are excited that it is allowing us to introduce datacentre infrastructure management solutions in the marketplace. We are working on a product called Trellis, which we are looking to launch at the end of this year or early next year. I think that will be game-changing.
How will you be differentiating your company from your competitors?
AS: At heart, Emerson is a technology and engineering company. In terms of differentiation, we will continue to leverage the full brand and scope of all products, solutions and services. But the key is to put all of it together. I think we are the only ones in the industry that offer the partners with a solution from when the power comes in from utility, into the switchboard and all the way down to the computing or communications infrastructure.
Secondly, we have a very strong local management team across the region and in every country that we operate.
We have staff that maintain customer relationships and we support them with having a strong technical support and application growth. So when a sales person gets out to meet with a customer and understands the customer’s needs and proposes solutions, the customers will be satisfied and they will get the best technologies and solutions that Emerson can offer. Service is also an important aspect for us. This is not as visible to people outside the industry but we have invested heavily in having qualified, trained service engineers on the ground. We invest in their training, safety tools, and advanced technologies. Ultimately, what we are selling our customers is availability, which means that their critical infrastructure is not going to decrease. These key points are vital to our current and future success.
What is your overall business strategy for Emerson Network Power?
AS: Our short-term goal is to successfully integrate Chloride and Avocent and make sure that we deliver full value proposition as we integrate all the technologies that we have for our customers. The second one is to continue to invest in expanding a regional market coverage. As we continue to invest, we will find and grow our talent pool and make sure that we have an active labour market. Asia is a booming market as is Australia. Countries such as Singapore and the Philippines all have such active labour markets right now, so it’s very difficult to find quality people.
We need to work towards hiring them early and training them. So training and recruitment is also key priority.
In terms of long-term goals, I want Emerson Network Power to be the singular choice for my customers. What I mean by this is that when any customer who has any requirement for computing and communications infrastructure need, they think of our company first and they look at us as being the trusted advisor to meet all their needs – whether its power, cooling or infrastructure management services. I want them to come to us and ask us to help them solve their problems. Another area is to continue to expand and enhance our market leadership position. I think we have the technologies, products – in energy efficiency or footprint, I want to make sure we give customers what they want so that they will continue to invest in region expansion.
The last strategy is to make us an empire of choice in attracting the brightest and the best in the industry and make sure that they are looking out in coming and working for us. It’s very easy to say it but working towards it is going to be challenging. I think we have well defined plans to execute and meet these goals.
So, what are your personal aspirations in this role?
AS: I am looking forward to retiring with Emerson. I have spent 13 years in the business and still feel young. I think I have a good 20 to 30 years ahead of me so, I want to see the company grow and prosper. In my history with Emerson, when I started off, the majority of my emphasis and focus was on me doing things very well, being a solo-performer and trying to make sure that I am contributing. But, slowly over the years, it has come down to now ensuring that we have all the teams performing and making sure that we are directing resources to where the opportunities are.
That happens in Emerson because our management process ensures that we stay hands-on in the business and at the same time, we are able to step back and define our vision for the business, communicating with the teams and spending time with customers in understanding their needs.