Mr. F.C. Sondhi, a great philanthropist and self made businessman, was born in the year 1906 in Sialkot which is now in Pakistan. Through his own hard work and self education, he was able to do well in his academic studies and was called by the then major sports company in United India, M/s Uberoi Limited to work there. He developed a shining reputation for honesty and was put under the personal supervision of Mr. Uberoi himself. At first he was made the inspector of branches of Uberoi Limited in India to ensure that branch offices were working properly & honestly and then as a reward for his good work he was sent to Rangoon in Burma in 1932 to look after the branch office there. Once again since he was successful in Rangoon, the company sent him to England.
Again the branch office in England was quite successful but during the 2nd World War between England and Germany the office was totally destroyed by bombs (it was situated in central London). Mr. Uberoi reluctantly closed down the office and told Mr. F.C. Sondhi to return to India. However, since no transport was available during the war days, and to go by ship was extremely dangerous, Mr. F.C. Sondhi had to stay in England and tried to make both ends meet by buying and selling various commodities.
Immediately after the war, Mr. F.C. Sondhi started his own small business in the Toy Trade in England in 1944.
Mr. F.C. Sondhi lived in England from 1936 onwards, but during the last 20 years of his life he visited India regularly every year and was keenly involved in projects and programmes particularly those for the upliftment of the poor and downtrodden.
In the year 1944, as already mentioned, Mr. F.C. Sondhi started a company in England by the name of F.C. Sondhi and Company Limited. At that time it was dealing only in Toys but after the partition of India in 1947, Mr. F.C. Sondhi felt that perhaps he could help the small Sports Goods Industry in Jalandhar by importing some goods from India and selling them in England.
With this idea in mind, in 1950 he journeyed to India by chance, with his younger son and set up a branch of his company in Jalandhar City. The branch was situated at No. 1 Basti Nau and he appointed a Manager, Mr. M.R. Khorana to look after the company.
Though the industry was only just beginning to settle down after the upheaval of partition, yet small quantities of Hockey sticks, Cricket balls, Footballs etc., were purchased from Jalandhar and exported to England.
In 1961 the Indian Government passed a law saying that all branch offices of foreign companies must be Indianised and the company then was converted to F.C. Sondhi and Company (India) Pvt. Ltd., with local shareholders. The company continued to export goods to F.C. Sondhi and Company Limited in England but also to other Sports Goods Importers in England. In fact Mr. F.C. Sondhi established contacts with others in England who started importing from the Indian Company. The company continued to be a merchant exporter upto the year 1967.
In 1967, the present Managing Director, Mr. P.C. Sondhi, (who was born and brought up in England) came to Jalandhar and started the manufacturing of cricket batting gloves and cricket legguards for a well known English company.
The beginning was very modest with just one skilled worker and one hand-sewing machine but slowly and gradually over a period of time, manufacturing activities expanded.
Initially work was done in rented premises but slowly and steadily the company started building its own factory in Basti Sheikh Road, which it settled down, in the year 1971.
During all these years Mr. F.C. Sondhi came to India regularly to provide guidance and advice to Mr. P.C. Sondhi who was stationed permanently in Jalandhar. A third generation joined the business in 1998 (Mr. Rajeev Anurag Sondhi s/o Mr. P.C. Sondhi).
Today, the FCS family consists of over 400 loyal and dedicated staff and workers. The entire factory is now housed at Sondhi Nagar on the outskirts of Jalandhar City. The total area of land there is 20 acres and provides ample room for expansion in years to come. The factory is beautifully landscaped with flowers and trees and is one of the most environmentally satisfying settings available for a factory in Jalandhar City. The factory is complete with a cricket ground, which is used for instant and confidential testing of the products manufactured.
FCS has grown manifold since it started manufacturing in 1967. Today, the company specializes in top quality cricket equipment including Top Grade English Willow Cricket Bats and a large variety of Kashmir Willow Cricket Bats and Cricket Balls for various levels of cricket.
The factory has in-house facilities for providing a wide range of protective equipment for Cricket. This includes abdo-guards, shin-guards, chest-guards, arm-guards and thigh-pads. Plastic blow-moulded bats, stumps and bases and helmets etc. are also manufactured completely in-house. The company is manufacturing for major brands in UK, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and the West Indies.
IDEAS INTO BUSINESS
With a view to aid our clientele with good quality sports accessories as per their standards, the company established an exclusive department to trace out the right merchandise and pack as per the specifications. This saves our customers going through the trouble of sourcing goods required by them from such a vast country like ours.
This department caters to all the needs of our customers and thus includes everything from training equipment like spring back stumps to sportswear.
To incorporate and implement the best manufacturing practices, which along with delivering the best quality products to our customers, also provide a healthy and safe working atmosphere to those engaged directly and indirectly in the manufacturing processes, and allow ample room for identification and growth of potential of all the resources involved, including human capital.
To identify and address the requirements of all those related to us for the benefit of general interest-employees, customers, associates, suppliers, vendors and community.
To value and respect all the resources utilized for commercial purposes through optimum utilization of such resources by implementing the best management and manufacturing practice-being used successfully worldwide and designing own need based concepts.
The facility has been laid out on a surface area of 20 acres, with spacious production halls, each dedicated to one type of product. The halls are very well lit and ventilated.
The factory is also called ‘The Garden Factory’ because of its lush green gardens spreading throughout the facility to provide a healthy environment to the staff in particular and society in general.
The factory has the most mechanized English Willow Cricket Bat manufacturing facility in Asia. This ensures that accuracy, precision, cost and quality, are always under strict control.
The factory also supports an in-house facility for foam compression moulding for all types of protective equipment, ensuring quality and cost control under close supervision.
Mechanization and automation upgrades are reviewed very regularly in all departments.
The company has working systems and procedures in place, in all departments, ensuring that each and every operation is done by the book as per laid down standards to ensure maximum strength, durability, performance and quality to the final product. More so, some systems have been classified as critical (based on their importance of affecting the performance of the final product), which are paid extra attention.
Politics without Principle
Pleasure without Conscience
Wealth without Work
Knowledge without Character
Commerce without Morality
Science without Humanity
Worship without Sacrifice
– MAHATMA GANDHI
FCS has always assumed its responsibility towards the society. Such are the reasons that we indulge in a lot of community and social work within and outside the company. One reason, which keeps us walking down this lane, is what we do is not because we should; it is because we want to.
The world is changing at a very fast pace and as one would expect, this is changing the business environment around the globe. Gone are the days when one used to get orders for the full season or the whole year !
The customer is getting more selective and wants the product to match very exact specifications. On top of this, orders need to be delivered in a very short period.
To match the increase in pace and precision requirements of the business, more of the manufacturing process is being mechanized.
FCS is mechanizing the various stages of bat manufacture. Bandsaw and other conventional machines are being phased out and are being replaced by “Special Purpose Machines” (SPMs). The company has introduced hi-tech and hi-production machines to make our bats and other wooden products. To improve the environment of the work place, dust extraction units have been installed. FCS is undergoing an extensive mechanization process with considerable amount of investment. This is being done in all production areas. The company has added advanced machines to mechanize the production of Batting Gloves, Leg Guards & Protectors.
FCS invites esteemed customers to come and see for themselves.