Manufactured sand (with sizes ranging from 0 to 4.75 mm) gained acceptability as an alternative to river sand, and, with its further classification, plaster sand (0 to 2.36mm) also began to gain traction in the area. The demand was so strong that even individuals building houses opted for manufactured sand and plaster sand, due to its perfect shape and quality.
“Demand for plaster sand is picking up. The government has taken a lot of initiatives to ban the extraction of natural river sand from river beds. This has also given rise to a lot of crushers coming up in and around Bangalore. I foresee the demand for manufactured and plaster sand growing and its acceptability gaining ground among common people also who build individual houses. It’s no longer limited to just the big builders; the notion that natural river sand is superior to crushed stone sand or manufactured sand is gone,” divulged Mr. Sharath Jayram, Managing Director, United Infra Minerals Pvt. Ltd.
60,000 tonnes per month with a Life Cycle Services contract
Opting to go with a Metso plant for aggregates and sand production to feed their own contracts, United Infra also did not want to deviate from the core business of construction. Finding the right solution was the key, and as soon as a Life Cycle Services package was offered, United Infra immediately opted for both an Annual Maintenance Contract (AMC) and an Operations & Maintenance Contract (OMC) for their first crushing and screening plant. After the plant was commissioned, it was operated and maintained by Metso’s service experts. The plant is run non-stop for approximately 18–19 hours a day, producing more than 60,000 tonnes per month on average.
Mr. Sharath Jayram adds, “We have been involved with Metso for about four years now. The plant was operational in 2014 and since then it’s been under a service and maintenance contract with Metso. The reason behind going with Metso for AMC and OMC is primarily to concentrate on sales and marketing. We didn’t want the additional burden of looking after the equipment. So far, nothing has gone wrong and we have been able to concentrate purely on marketing, sales and our core business: construction.” He added, “The prices offered by Metso for both AMC and OMC are quite competitive in the market. I’m sure that if we do it on our own, we may be able to save one or two rupees or we may end up spending more than one or two rupees. By handing over the plant to Metso, we are more relaxed, and we can concentrate more on sales and marketing without worrying about the machinery at all or worrying about the production. We just give them targets and they are able to deliver with sturdy machinery and an expert team on site.”