Anand Kutre from Belagavi who was in the USA and has contributed to all the major car making companies came back to India with a dream to make a difference and came into limelight when he designed the Swivel Seat Mechanism for Passenger Car Front Seat.
The mechanism can be fitted to the front passenger seat of a passenger car, which allows the seat to Swivel Out, thus providing easy ingress & egress to handicap & people with special medical conditions.
Anand completed his schooling from St.Paul’s High school and then Engineering from GIT and then worked in Pune after which he shifted to Detroit, USA in 2000, where he worked for Chrysler’s Jeep and truck division.
He worked with major OEM’s & tier’1 like Daimler Chrysler (Jeep & Truck Engineering Detroit), Faurecia (North America Seating Division), Autoliv (Technical Center – Auburn Hills Michigan) & Tata Johnson Controls, both in India & USA.
Somewhere in 2006, Anand decided that he will have to come back to his motherland and started his own venture Augen Technologies, an engineering services company in Bengaluru. By 2009 the company had 200 employees and a turnover of Rs.24 Crore. But with some differences that arose with the partner he decided that he will have to start all on his own if he has to achieve his goal, hence he started True Consultancy, a startup whose core focus was on innovation in India using technology.
He has Swivel Mechanism for car passenger seat for Handicap Assistance (2- Patents) and also the cutter Module for Tea Harvester patent to his name.
Anand has also designed a Tea Harvesting Machine – Cutter Module. This was a part of a tea harvester – the cutter module is a small battery operated devices which can d selective cutting of tea buds, collects after cutting & applies an antimicrobial coating to prevent rot after the cut.
Speaking to ABB, Anand said
What made you design the Swivel seat ?
Toyota India wanted to launch a product to their Welcab in India but with Indian cost. I designed the product for them but it did not take off due to various reasons. Since similar products are available in Europe & NA but difficult to get in India I thought there is a necessity for it which will help people. Hence I designed a better product with my own investment & launched it this year.
Tell us more about the Swivel seat, its cost etc?
TurnPlus (Swivel Seat) is a simple mechanism which can be fitted to the front seats of most car models in India. We simply remove the seat, put the mechanism & put back the seat. We use the same OE seat without any modification to the car thus maintaining the value of the car. The mechanism is tested for Crash Test, Seat Belt Anchorage Test & Endurance Test at +60 C deg and -40C deg. Thus make it is safe.
Your work in Detroit and major OEM’s was definitely a Plus for you new journey at Augen and True Consultancy?
Yes definitely my over seas experience helped in both my ventures in India. The international exposure gave me a different insight in both Product Design & Management.
Any Plans to open a office in your Home town Belagavi?
Actually I have registered True Consultancy in Belgaum. I am not able to find an experienced Designer to take charge I am running my operations from Bangalore. If I get the right manpower definitely I will start operations in India.
Any good or bad experience you want to share about the Swivel seat?
Well most of the experience is good so far. The only bad part is sue to funding and manpower issues the product got delayed.
Any message to the upcoming entrepreneurs ?
Currently there are a lot of opportunities and new platforms in India so make use of it & focus on business model which will generate new Innovative Products rather than services.
How was the support from Family as not many would want their happy going kid back from US to start up here from scratch?
My family was very supportive especially my wife. Since I had my first kid in India after I returned the second part of the question never bothered me.
Belagavi to an extent is also good at the automotive industry with Body building works been done here since decades, have you looked at that aspect, may to improve it or some other way ?
To be honest I have not thought about it.
What are your Future Plans?
I am working on a Suite of products in this line which will help the Differently Abled community to be a part of the mainstream society.