The production kicked off from the state-of-the-art Steel Melting Shop (SMS) on 7 December. The foray into steel production is part of NINL’s product diversification strategy to position itself among the top steel producers in the country. NINL, the country’s biggest producer and exporter of pig iron is on the turnaround trail after the successful completion of its blast furnace capital repair work in April this year. The addition of steel billets to its varied product portfolio would help fuel the turnaround plans and inch closer to making a net profit.
S S Mohanty, vice chairman and managing director at NINL, said, “NINL is in the last lap towards achieving the turnaround of the plant. The steel market is improving and we expect to earn maximum net margin on billet by reducing the cost of production. Shortly, the first export consignment of billet will be sent. There is also plan for TMT and Wire Rod soon. The next target would be operation of the captive mines at Koira which is expected towards the end of the current financial year. This will be a game changer for the company.”
The blast furnace capital repair work marked a watershed moment for NINL. After the overhaul, NINL has been able to ramp up its hot metal and pig iron output significantly. Riding on the enhanced output, NINL logged Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) profit of Rs 4,000 per tonne from pig iron operations during April-August. In the corresponding period of last financial year, the company was in the Ebitda negative zone.
MMTC with an equity of 49.9 per cent is the largest stakeholder in NINL. The Odisha government is represented through two of its PSUs- Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) and Industrial Promotion & Investment Corporation of Odisha Ltd (Ipicol) which between them hold 26 per cent stake.