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Bhel plans acquisition of transmission cos

P B Jayakumar  |  Mumbai 

Bharat Heavy Electricals (Bhel) plans to acquire in the non-conventional energy and transmission business to more than double its turnover to Rs 50,000 crore in the next five years.

"Our future growth in new identified business areas such as non-conventional energy and transmission will be mainly through the inorganic route. We are looking at opportunities in India and abroad," according to K Ravi Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director.

"We have adequate cash to meet acquisitions and expansions for the next few years," he said. Separately, the company is holding talks with two Japanese for technical or strategic partnership to foray into solar power. The company is planning an integrated facility in West Bengal with an investment of about Rs 3,000 crore. The facility will manufacture polycrystalline silicon (polysilicon) ingots, solar wafers, solar cells, modules and solar panel systems. Bhel may also rope in Bangalore-based Bharat Electronics as a strategic partner in the venture.

Public sector company Bhel is currently facing increased competition in the domestic market from overseas players and is also looking at expansion across various developing countries.

"Currently, we get only about 7 per cent of our revenues from abroad and hope to increase this share to 10 per cent within a few years. We are also looking at acquiring transformer manufacturing facilities in countries such as Egypt and Myanmar, since our capacities here are full," said Ravi Kumar.

He said the company is also in talks with a major Japanese player for technology tie-up to foray into the transmission equipment business. A brownfield facility is being planned at Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh for foraying into transmission equipment.

In the wind energy segment, the company is already supplying alternators for GE, he said. Ravikumar said the proposed forgings and casting facility for nuclear power equipment would come up at either Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh or Mundra in Gujarat, with an investment of Rs 1,000-2,000 crore.

The company is in talks with Japan's Kobe Steel, Sheffield Forge Masters and home-grown Bharat Forge for setting up the facility in a joint venture or strategic tie-up.

"We hope to finalise the partner by March and will then approach the respective state governments," he said.

The company currently has an order book of Rs 1,15,000 crore, with about 40,000 MW orders placed for the 11th five-year plan period. He said the company is expected to grow by 30 per cent during the current financial year, contrary to the earlier projection of about 25 per cent. Bhel had a turnover of Rs 21,400 crore during the last financial year, with a growth of 14.2 per cent.

First Published: Fri, November 28 2008. 00:00 IST