The official opening of the office of Marshall Automation America Inc. in Duluth on Feb. 14 was a family affair in more ways than one.
Ani Agnihotri, who is a co-founder and CEO of the Gwinnett County-based company, is the great grand nephew of the S.S. Sarup, who designed and built one of India’s first lathes in the 1940s. Mr. Sarup’s son Sh. Gautam Sarup, whom the company calls a pioneer in “intelligent automation” opened Marshall Industries in 1961 and was joined by his two sons Gaurav in 1986 and Prashant in 1989.
The Sarup brothers now are joined by Mr. Agnihotri, their first cousin, as a co-founder and CEO of the U.S. operations while his cousins will be holding in addition to their global responsibilities the positions of chief operation officer and chief technology officer.
Other family members also play key roles in the company, but there is a generational, technological side to the Marshall story as well with one generation of cutting-edge machines following another.
From the mid-1980s when the company was manufacturing bench lathes, their products grew to include capstan lathes that were used to repetitiously duplicate parts. From the capstans the company developed multi spindle drilling and tapping machines that advance the mechanical productivity of a machine system.
And as computers became more powerful, the company stayed abreast of their development by producing CNC (computer numerical control) machinery powered by pre-programmed computer software that dictates the movement of factory tools and complex machinery.
While Marshall Machines Limited‘s world headquarters is based in Ludhiana, India, it also has an “Industrial Internet of Things” innovation center in Manesar, India, where it is developing its advanced automated CNC cells and IIoT solutions with robots under the rubric of being a “next generation Smart Company.”
Prashant Sarup, the COO of Marshall Automation America and joint managing director of Marshall Machines India, told Global Atlanta that the company currently has more than 400 employees around the world already with important presences in Southeast Asia and Europe.
Their European presence is enhanced through a close relationship with the Spinner Group, a German company, which, according to its website, produces annually at its three factories more than 1,000 precision CNC-lathes, machining centers, toolgrinders and automated machines.
He added that although the company is just opening its U.S. operations, he has been attending the International Manufacturing Technological Show (IMTS) in Chicago for years.
Mr. Agnihotri, who has been an active businessman in the Atlanta area promoting closer ties between India and the Southeast U.S., said that he has been laying the groundwork for the company opening for the past four years, assuring that the office was in an optimal location and had all the necessary licenses.
Jorge Fernandez, the former Global Commerce chief at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, attended the ribbon cutting ceremony telling Global Atlanta that he was elated to participate since the chamber had worked with Mr. Agnihotri as part of its India initiative and had travelled many times there to view Marshall’s operations. He was joined by John Woodward, senior director, foreign investment, from the chamber.
Nick Massino, chief economic development officer at Partnership Gwinnett, a public-private initiative dedicated to bringing news jobs and capital investments to the county, and Shantell Wilson, Gwinnett’s economic development manager, both extended warm greetings to the Marshall team and the two dozen attendees at the opening.
In his interview with Global Atlanta, Prashant Sarup said that he expected the Gwinnett office would attract clients from the auto and aerospace industries. He also said that Marshall would attract clients from the defense industry and from the “two-wheeler” sector including motorcycle and scooters that have many finely adjusted gears.
The company, he added, also would cast its net wide to include manufacturing of industrial fans, air-conditioning units, refrigeration units, pneumatic pumps, gasoline valves and manufacturing equipment with a wide range of mechanical parts.
To learn more about Marshall Automation America Inc., click here.