The heights by great men, reached and kept, were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night.” This quote by H.W. Longfellow keeps inspiring Prakash Seshan, managing director, Babcock Power, to work better each day. Seshan is a seasoned professional with over 34 years of experience across the power, oil and gas, and metals and minerals industries. A mechanical engineering graduate from NIT Durgapur, he manages Babacok Power’s businesses in India and Asia Pacific. He is responsible for marketing operations as well as client relationships. The company’s focus areas are environmental technologies, products for the power, oil and gas, fertiliser and nuclear industries, and solar thermal and waste-to-energy technologies.
On the state of the power equipment market, Seshan expresses concern regarding overcapacity. “India’s installed power equipment manufacturing capacity is in excess of the demand for thermal power capacity addition,” he says. The silver lining is the growing opportunity in environmental solutions. “The next 10 years will witness frenetic activity involving the installation of FGD and selective catalytic reduction systems in coal-fired plants. There will be opportunities for the upgradation of coal-fired power plants that are over 20 years old.” Seshan believes that renewables are the way forward. “India is the fourth most attractive market globally for renewables. Babcock Power with its competencies in concentrating solar power will address these opportunities at an appropriate time,” he says.
Of all his assignments, he fondly remembers his role as vice-president and head of international marketing at GEA Energy. It allowed him to appreciate the nuances of working across different geographies with people of diverse cultures. He cherishes the relationships he built and the experience he gained during that tenure. Seshan follows a mixed approach in management. “I like the team to be involved as it helps in building ownership. However, there are some circumstances when a decision has to be made in an autocratic manner, keeping the interest of the organisation above everything,” he says. On maintaining a work-life balance, Seshan says he works for long hours on weekdays and saves the weekends for family. In his spare time, he watches the news, reads business journals and watching movies or plays. In the years to come, he hopes to travel more with his wife and fulfil her bucket list.