Knam Marketing: Buoyed by Optimism amid Rising Shipping Costs - Papermart
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Knam Marketing: Buoyed by Optimism amid Rising Shipping Costs

Founded in 2009, Knam Marketing Pvt. Ltd. focuses on global waste paper sourcing for Indian paper mills. The company provides more than 40 different grades and trades close to half a million tonnes of waste paper annually. In the ‘Finished Paper’ category, it provides kraft paper, duplex board, MG poster, envelope papers, food grade papers, and so on. Knam is also specialised in providing waste paper recycled pulp – American OCC 11 recycled Pulp and OCC 12 recycled Pulp, which are made by recycling 100 percent American OCC.

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(L-R) Mr. Gagandeep Singh, Export Director, Mr. Amit Goel, Founder & MD and
Mr. Rahul Gupta, Sales Director, Knam Marketing Pvt. Ltd.

‘’The growth strategy of the company is to cater to waste paper at least a million tonnes a year and export a minimum of half a million tonnes of finished paper out from India.”

In a conversation with Paper Mart, Mr. Amit Goel, Founder & MD, Knam Marketing Pvt. Ltd., presents an overview of the company, the product range supplied by the company, and the growth strategies of the company.

Paper Mart: Could you please give us a glimpse into the business journey of Knam Marketing Pvt. Ltd. along with its crucial milestones and market presence?

Amit Goel: Knam Marketing Pvt. Ltd. was founded in 2009 as a waste paper supplier. We started with barely three-four containers and went up to 200 containers in 2012. The period 2017-18 was quite significant in terms of our business growth as we became more concerned about tonnage rather than containers. We reached the capacity of supplying around 4,50,000 tonnes and realised the huge potential for finished paper exports in India. That is when we entered the finished papers segment. Currently, the exports in this segment are looked after by Mr. Rahul Gupta and Mr. Gagandeep Singh. We also do stocklots, and that’s also handled by them.

Talking about the export side, we began our venture when China’s imports grew at their fastest pace, however, soon we realised that we can’t be 100 percent dependent on the Chinese market and started exploring the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) markets, and today, we can say that we have achieved an outstanding growth rate in the MG Poster Paper segment – which caters to the food industry in the MENA market. Presently, we provide more than 300 tonnes of MG Poster Paper in the range of 18-30 GSM, which is majorly used for food packaging. Thus, we have a decent contribution in the categories of – Duplex Board, Kraft Paper, and so on. We provide various kraft paper grades, and have also been exploring and undertaking research to bring more such grades to the market. The writing & printing segment is not very much on track per se, and the reason for this volatility is the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We are certainly hopeful that the market situation will improve further for the writing & printing segment and we’ll be able to achieve the impending growth in this category as well.

PM: What are the different ranges of Kraft Paper supplied by you? How do you foresee the future trends of the Kraft Paper industry?

AG: With respect to the kraft paper segment, we offer a range of – fluting paper, test liner, kraft liner, core board, white top kraft liner, and virgin kraft liner. At the moment, we are also trying our hands and exploring the opportunities for the paper bag industry which will substitute the plastic bags in the market. In the commitment towards the common goal of a world without plastic, kraft paper emerges as a viable, sustainable, and effective alternative.

The future of the packaging industry is expected to be largely defined by honeycomb kraft paper – one of the very few eco-friendly alternatives to bubble wraps. The base product of honeycomb is kraft paper, and its GSM range varies between 80-200 GSM, depending upon the kind of products that needs to be packed inside that particular honeycomb. All in all, the kraft paper industry has a promising growth potential in the paper-based/sustainable packaging industry.

Knam Marketing is going to come up with its own warehouse and distribution network channels in the Middle East market, which is another huge development.

PM: Please talk about the USPs, and applications of the MG Poster paper.

AG: In the MG Paper/Tissue segment, there are different varieties of paper – coloured poster papers and white poster papers. The coloured poster papers are used for a number of applications in packaging such as bangles, textiles and fruits which are not directly consumed, but washed or processed before consumption. However, the type of MG poster paper depends upon the preference of the market. For instance, Turkey tends to use blood-red poster paper with 30 GSM and African countries use pinkish-red poster paper with the range between 22-24 GSM.

Likewise, the white MG food-grade poster paper with 18-22 GSM is majorly used for food items which are directly consumed. We specialise both in the virgin as well as recycled poster paper grades. The recycled poster paper has a huge growth potential.

PM: What challenges do you face in the supply chain and how do you overcome them?

AG: We are quite pleased with the government’s active role and participation. There are no tariff duties but incentives on the exports. The only challenge is with respect to shipping. The freight costs have risen sharply, almost 4 or 5 times higher than the usual costs which have made the trade scenario very difficult. Nonetheless, we believe that these challenges should get resolved very soon. With time, the market is getting matured. Further, many renowned companies are foraying into the Indian market which is a favourable sign. The product quality in the domestic industry is also getting enhanced.

PM: Has there been any recent development at Knam Marketing that you wish to talk about?

AG: Recently, there have been two major developments at the company. First and foremost, Knam Marketing is no more an indentor but a trader. Through the years, we’ve been able to establish a robust reach at a global level, by setting up our offices globally. We have established our own waste paper packaging plants in various countries which is one of the USPs of our company. These developments mark as some of the most promising and significant accomplishments for us.

In addition, with respect to the finished paper supplies, Knam Marketing is going to come up with its own warehouse and distribution network channels in the Middle East market, which is another huge development. Besides, the company has also started supplying to war-zone countries where trade is not very easy as regards exports, such as – Syria, Yemen, etc. The second major development at the company is that we have shifted to our new corporate office.

PM: What are the future roadmap and growth strategies of the company?

AG: The growth strategy of the company is to cater to waste paper at least a million tonnes a year and export a minimum of half a million tonnes of finished paper out from India. Moving ahead, we will focus on promoting the reach of Indian products – that is the vision of the company and we are working hard to actualise this vision.

PM: What are your views on the current scenario of the Indian paper and paper packaging industry? Do you have any suggestions for the government?

AG: With the growth in the packaging industry which spans almost every industry segment, the rise of sustainable packaging is also projected. The only viable alternative to conventional packaging materials – be it glass, wood, or plastic – is paper packaging. That is a promising prospect for the paper industry.

Also Read: Adler Paper: Turning Waste into Meaningful Resources.

The only thing that I wish to add to the conversation is that the government should play an even vital role in promoting the recycling of paper as opposed to the already prevalent virgin fibers in the paper industry. Nevertheless, I also believe that the government is already taking proper steps in this direction.