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Made in Madurai                

Monday, August 22, 2011

Problems Faced by Small Scale Entrepreneurs of the Industrial Estates of Madurai Region

India a land striving for Unity among diversities is rich by a cultural heritage and grooming entrepreneurs. Though not big shots, most of them have established under Small Scale Industries. The SSIs being the provider of inputs to the Big Business Houses are playing a major role in the economy.

SSI includes industrial undertakings in which investments in Fixed Assets in Plant & Machinery excluding Land & Buildings whether held under ownership, lease or hire purchase does not exceed 1 crore. Most of them act as ancillary to Big Business Houses. Some are tiny industries where Fixed Assets including Plant & Machinery is worth only 25 lakhs or below and yet another group concentrates on exports.

Madurai, better known as the temple city of Tamil Nadu, India has many industrial estates. Based on SIDCO's manual Madurai Region includes industrial Estates of Madurai, Kappallur, Andipatti and Theni. These industrial estates emerged as a major supplier of mass consumption items like leather and leather goods, sheet metal goods, stationery, soap, detergent, domestic utensils, toothpaste & tooth powder, preserved fruits and vegetables, wooden and steel furniture, flash light torches and the like. The contribution of the small scale sector in saving foreign exchange through production of a large import substitution items cannot be under estimated. Because of this the SSI occupy a central place in the Indian economy.

As entrepreneurs increased their problems as to production, marketing, infrastructure and Financing, also increased. Many people vaguely quoted it as managerial problems. Going into the details we see that:

* The production problems include raw material availability, capacity utilization, and storage problems.

* The marketing problems arises because of dealing in only one product, cut throat competition, adopting cost oriented method of pricing, lack of advertisement, not branding their products etc.,

* The financial problems include investment risks, procurement of loan from banks and their repayment, meeting day to day expenses and the like.

* The labour problems include highly demanding employees, absenteeism lack of skilled workers and transportation of workers.

* Infrastructure problems also add coal to the fire. Unless and until you have the infrastructure in its place the rest of the efforts are futile.

* Personal problems like spending less time with family and for the whole sweat exerted the rewards have not been favorable.

Though the industrial estates of Madurai Region are performing satisfactorily as far as profits are concerned, they tire a lot and rewards are not commensurate.

Above all starting up a business unit itself poses big problems. Though here in Tamil Nadu, online provisional registration is done for SSIs, and single window system is followed to save lot of time, the promoters have to travel a lot to establish and to place themselves into the shoes of directors.

Professor in Management
Thiagarajar School of Management
Thirupparankundrum, Madurai-625 005

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