In July last year, a windmill of 700 KW capacity began pumping electricity into the Tamil Nadu grid from Uthumalai, in Tirunelveli district. The windmill's claim to fame lies in the fact that it has been developed by an Indian company, Garuda Vaayu Shakthi Limited.Only three other companies - Suzlon, WinWinD and Kenersys - own the technology for their turbines, says Vineeth Vijayaraghavan, Editor of the industry newsletter, Panchabuta.com. "Garuda's wind turbines are not just made in India but made for India."
The company is led by a team of home-grown entrepreneurs. Together, N. Srinivasan, P. Chandramouli and I.K. Pillai make a formidable team. Srinivasan is a chartered accountant who earlier headed the wind turbine business at Shriram EPC.Chandramouli is a mechanical engineer and an IIM-Ahmedabad alumnus. Pillai is an expert in identifying wind sites. Until recently, he was helping wind turbine developers get possession of wind sites and obtain government clearances.
"It took us 18 months to develop the technology for two types of turbines, of 700 KW and 1,700 KW capacity," says Chandramouli. The 700 KW turbine in Uthumalai was the first one sold by Garuda. Tamil Nadu-based PMP Iron & Steel, the customer, is now in talks with the company for a 10 MW wind farm.