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90 Degree Stone: The Game Changer

R K Marble90 Degree Stone is state-of- the-art design and manufacturing division of R. K. Marble, a global leader in the mining, production and processing of marble based at Kishangarh, Ajmer, Rajasthan. Being an out of the box conceptualizer,90 Degree Stone, designed exclusively by its in house research and development team is engaged in the production of assortment of high-end products, using the ancient stone with current composition.
90 degree stone has been able to bring out the best potential of natural stone with surface textures and patterns that simply overlap nature’s own creation. The stone’s surface is redesigned using a special technique that creates infinity of optical effects. Chatting with Stone and Tile in India magazine, Mr. Vineet Patni, Director, R. K. Marble, elaborated on 90 Degree and products under it. Excerpts are here:
Stone and Tile in India: Tell us about features your unique project-90 Degree Stone.

Vineet Patni: The project 90 Degree Stone is meant for the highest value addition in natural stone products. Under this project, natural stones are imparted new dimensions of aesthetics by means of high end designs and finishes. The project synergizes talent, innovation, and technology to produce remarkable stone outcomes apt to put India in the global perspective vis-à-vis high end designs and surface finishes.

Within two years of its existence, it has emerged as the only centre of such kind in the country that has made the use of natural stones an integral part of all furnishing and decorative style by expanding its traditional core value.

STI: You say, you have employed talent, innovation and cutting edge technology in the project. Please explain.

VP: We have invested in numerous high end machines for Italy and Germany. Apart from these expensive and sophisticated machines, we have procured lots of technology from these countries which are being used in creating value in natural stones. Moreover, these machines are unique in themselves. These are not on-the-shelf machines, rather are off-the-shelf designed specifically to match our requirement. These ensure comprehensive quality control and checking procedures at all the stages of the manufacturing process .The highly mechanized plant integrates sustainability, craftsmanship, culture and innovation.

Besides machines and tools, our more than 25 years of experience in natural stone industry enables us to have insight as regards to available options, features and quality of both machines and stones.

STI: Are these machines really helpful in attaining what you aspire for under 90 Degree?

VP: Of course, these machines are helpful. But, it is our consummate people, my direction by way of 14 years of experience, interest and passion that matters eventually to get the best results in terms of aesthetics and finishes. I can easily judge which all processes required to arrive at the desired outcome. Often, it’s not a single process. We undergo almost 6-8 processes for every design. For most of the effects on natural stone, slabs need to be processed under 6-7 different machines to get what we exactly want. It’s the combination of machines, knowledge, and research which produces the hallmark effects under 90 Degree.

STI: What’s your rationale behind calling this project ‘Master of Stone’?

VP: First of all, this (90 Degree) is the only factory in the world where we are processing granite, marble, sandstone, slate, and quartzite. These are the major five varieties of natural stones used as building material covering almost about 80-90 percent of entire natural stone produce. We are doing all five of them under a single roof.

We are effecting value addition in all five major building stone varieties. In fact, not just value addition, we are procuring blocks, cutting them into slabs, and finally giving all kinds of effects viz. designs and finishes. The facility is called ‘Master of Stone’ as we are doing almost everything related to natural stone. It’s not easy. As you may notice, granite and quartzite are very hard whereas marble and sandstone are soft materials. They all are different in their chemical composition, strength, and usages; therefore need different technology, effects, designs and finishes to arrive at the good saleable material.

STI: Tell us about the products under 90 Degree?

VP: We have many products under 90 Degree. Ocean Black is one premium slate product which was there before 90 Degree. We are processing Ocean Black uniquely under 90 Degree now. 90 Degree has many new products in addition to erstwhile popular products before the project was started.

90 degree offers a wide range in myriad colors, textures, forms and qualities. A variety of designs for both interior and exterior surfaces is created on multiple sizes of stones and different cladding techniques in patterns. The stones’ potential use is largely enhanced by fabricating it in slab form or as a tile to meet the decorative and functional requirement.

In 90 Degree, we have paramount focus on design and finishes. Designs like Bamboo, Flower, Circle, Cube and Cubo are there to be executed on granite and other natural stones to have nice results. Basically design and finish are two different categories. Designs are set patterns whereas finishes do not exhibit any set pattern. We invoke a lot of mechanical effects by means of shot, flame, water, brushes, special abrasives, and tools to create different effects aesthetically on natural stones. These finishes change from stone to stone.

We are doing more than 25 granites. Every granite gives different results; therefore we employ different design and finishes on them. Under 90 Degree, there are other products of marble, slate, quartzite and sandstone and we are imparting the best value addition to all of them.

STI: Are these all-purpose stones, or dedicated to some exclusive usages only?

VP: They are exclusive, produced by keeping their usages in mind. When we do value addition, it’s not only polishing, rather something beyond polishing. We effect three dimensional finishes in the natural stones. Third dimension is the depth that we create in the natural stone by way of our expertise and technology.

Our major applications include elevation (interior or exterior), drive ways, wet areas like swimming pool, parking, and landscaping. With special effects, some of the products are used in bathrooms and interior flooring.

STI: Tell us about the market and export of the products.

VP: Ocean Black is a premium exported product of 90 Degree having huge overseas demand. We are already exporting to more than 30 countries worldwide including US, Canada, Italy, Spain, China, Singapore etc. Other new products and designs are also catching up well in terms of export.

STI: Are there any similar stones in the market (national or international) competing with the project’s yields?

VP: Brazilian slate is available in overseas market. However, Ocean Black is far superior in terms of aesthetics, properties and strength. It’s a premium product having huge demand. Only the people wishing to spend less prefer to buy Brazilian slate.

STI: As co-sponsor of the India Stonemart 2015 in Jaipur, do you wish to say anything?

VP: Stonemart is very reputed event in our industry especially in India. Lots of foreign visitor come as well. We expect to meet all the industry’s stakeholder viz. producers, suppliers, consultants, architects, interior designers, and existing and prospective customers at this exhibition. We expect to disseminate additional awareness about our products, brand, R. K. Marble and 90 Degree. We also expect to witness reasonable conversions here at the show.

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