Mahesh Krishna (K Mahesh), 76, who had been heading the Sundaram Brake Linings Ltd, part of $8.5-billion TVS Group, passed away on Saturday. He was the younger brother of TVS & Sons Chairman Suresh Krishna.
K Mahesh, born on October 11, 1943, had a degree of Bachelor of Technology in Metallurgy from IIT - Madras and was appointed in T V Sundram Iyengar & Sons Private Ltd, Madurai on December 1, 1965. He had been rendering technical and administrative services to the Company.
After undergoing initial training in India for two years, and further training in Foundry Technology and Management in the UK, he had handled important assignments given to him by the company.
He also held the position of whole-time director in T V Sundram Iyengar & Sons Private Ltd for several years. K Mahesh also held the position of Chairman and Managing Director of the company but relinquished his position as MD on May 26, 2014.
After retiring from the position, he continued to hold the position of Director and Non-Executive Chairman of the company. He was also related to K Ramesh, Director as his brother.
Sundaram Brake Lines (SBL) was originally Sundaram Abex, a joint venture (JV) with US-based Abex Corporation. It was started by the TVS Group with financial and technical collaboration.
A senior industry veteran, known to TVS and family members, recalled that after liberalisation, the two had an uneasy partnership, K Mahesh did not get their support for technology upgradation.
Then, Abex exited the JV and it became SBL. Mahesh worked very hard to upgrade technology for the manufacturing of brake lining, revamped production system with TQM and adopted Toyota's lean manufacturing system.
Riding on the auto boom and increased demand for new generation vehicles, SBL got good support from OEMs like Maruti, Telco and Ashok Leyland. By 1998, SBL was exporting to as many as 54 countries.
Mahesh achieved a breakthrough in developing a product for the Indian Railways. He also successfully represented the cause of auto component makers as the president of ACMA.
In early 2000, his son Krishna, who was working in Toyota, joined SBL.
Mahesh was a big fan of small cars and he used to take pride in using the Santro when it was introduced.