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NTPC, Essar Oil and Lanco Infratech may witness some action today

Power producer NTPC has put in place a strong monitoring mechanism to check erring contractors and suspended entities will be screened again before allowing them to participate in future projects. State-run NTPC, which has an installed capacity of 39,674 MW, plans to increase its generation to 1,28,000 MW by 2032. As part of strengthening its monitoring mechanism, the state-run major would now onwards carry out strict screening of suspended contractors once their suspension period is over, before allowing them to participate in NTPC projects. So far, NTPC has barred 13 entities from business dealings with the company on account of fraudulent activities. The debarment varies from three years to indefinite period. In case, a contractor is found to be non-performing, an independent panel would assess their performance based on four major parameters. They are financial status, project execution and management capability, engineering and quality assurance capability as well as claims and disputes.

India's second biggest private refiner Essar Oil has quadrupled processing of cheaper ultra heavy crude oils at its Vadinar refinery in Gujarat, following the unit's expansion, to earn handsome margins. Vadinar refinery, which is amongst the most complex units globally, has stabilized operations at its expanded capacity of 20 million tonnes per annum (MTPA). The refinery's diet of ultra heavy crude, which are cheaper and offer better margins rose four fold to 64 percent in July-September from 15 percent a year ago. The refinery processed almost 3.21 MT of ultra heavy crude oil in the quarter. The company had turned 5.07 MT of crude oil into products in the second quarter. The company has secured supply of ultra heavy crude oil as it has signed term contracts for 70 percent of requirement with Latin American, Middle East and domestic suppliers like Cairn India. As a result, it earned $7.86 for turning every barrel of crude oil into petroleum product in Q2 in the July- September quarter as against a gross refining margin of $5.07 per barrel in the same period a year ago.

Lanco Infratech plans to quadruple annual coal production to 16 million tonnes by 2015 from its Griffin mines in Australia. The diversified group had acquired Griffin coal assets for AUD 730 million in March last year. Griffin mines are already producing about 3.6-3.7 million tonnes of coal and the same would be ramped up to 4.7 - 5 million tonnes by April next year. Meanwhile, Lanco is locked in a AUD 3.5 billion legal battle with Australia's Perdaman Industries over Griffin. Multinational Perdaman, last year, filed the lawsuit against Lanco in Australia, alleging non-compliance with coal supply pact for its upcoming urea plant in Western Australia. For its upcoming Collie urea plant, Perdaman had entered into a 25-year coal supply pact with Australia's Griffin Coal, which was acquired by Lanco in March 2011. The pact was finalized in December 2010, with the then owners of Griffin.

Hyderabad-based cement maker NCL Industries is planning to set up a 30-MW captive power plant with Rs 150-crore investment.  The plant would be set up at its Mattapalli cement manufacturing unit in Nalgonda district of Andhra Pradesh. The objective behind planning own power plant is to ensure a regular power supply for cement manufacturing activity as power supply had become very uncertain in the state of Andhra Pradesh. In addition, the Hyderabad-based company eyes to sell the surplus power that will add to its revenue. Its total power-requirement is around 23 MW. The company reported lower net profit of Rs 1.21 crore in Q2 FY 13 as against Rs 11.08 crore in the same period last year. The net sales also stood lower at Rs 90.14 crore in Q2 FY 13 as compared to Rs 109.37 crore in Q2 FY 11. The operations of the company have been adversely affected due to severe power cuts and sluggish market conditions for cement.

International Finance Corporation (IFC) under its investment strategy has planned to invest $9 million in JMT Auto for its expansion and debottlenecking program at its existing component manufacturing, forging and foundry operations at Jamshedpur. The $20 million project will include Greenfield cold forging facility on 3.1 acre of land taken on lease basis at Jamshedpur. The project would not only help in reducing scrap rates along with better mechanical properties to the end products but also intends to ramp up the company's Heat Treatment and CNC machining capacity. JMT Auto is one of the leading Auto component manufacturers in Eastern region. The company had identified Transmission Components as its key business area and acquired core competency in manufacturing products.

Home textile manufacturer Welspun India is eyeing up to $650 million revenue about Rs 3,547.7 crore revenues by the end of this fiscal on the back of solid order books. The company had posted sales growth of 15 percent at Rs 802.2 crore for the quarter ended September 30, compared to Rs 699.2 crore in the same quarter of the previous fiscal. The home textile manufacturer, which is operating at about 80-85 percent of its capacity, is planning to ramp up its manufacturing strength in all its segments by 30-35 percent in 3-5 years. The company has two manufacturing units in Vapi and Anjar in Gujarat with a current capacity of 50,000 tonne in towel, 50 million metre in bed linen and 12 million units in rugs. Welspun India, which gets 94 percent of its revenue from exports, is also planning to increase its share in the domestic business to Rs 100 crore this fiscal, on the back of enhanced distribution network.

Tata Steel is evaluating the impact of cost overrun on the ongoing six million tonne greenfield steel project at Kalinga Nagar in Odisha's Jajpur district. The areas which had hit the company included forex impact, taxes and social cost. The original project cost for the proposed six million tonne plant was Rs 35,000 crore. Though, the company was not able to get raw material security for the project as allotments of mines were yet to come through, Tata Steel is moving ahead with the project in full-swing and expected to begin the three million first phase production by March 2014. Tata Steel had signed MoU with the Odisha government for the project in 2004, but the work was severely affected following a clash in 2006 between the security forces and tribal squatters opposing shifting from the project site that resulted in the death of 14 persons.

Arvind Remedies is planning to invest Rs 190 crore in its Ayurveda facility in Chennai to manufacture drugs. The financial closure is completed and the Chennai-based company has already ordered machineries for the said plan, which is expected to be ready by June 2013. The project will be funded through Rs 50 crore from promoters and corporate bodies and Rs 140 crore through bank loans. The company now plans to increase focus on higher margin segments of retail business and add four more states in the marketing operations every year. It is also looking at launching off-patent products in India and launching a speciality product every year after tapping the pan-India market. The company is in the process of developing five products to file Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDAs) and the first ANDA is likely to be filed at the end of this year to USFDA.

Public sector Dena Bank expects to achieve a total business of Rs 1.5 lakh crore by the end of this fiscal on the back of sound growth in deposits and advances. The bank aims to have a credit growth of 18 percent and deposit growth of 17 percent in FY13. By the end of September quarter, the public sector lender had gross advances of Rs 59,406 crore and total deposit of Rs 83,552 crore, taking the total business to Rs 1.43 lakh crore. The bank, which has seen advances growth of 37.83 percent and deposit growth of 30 percent in the second quarter of FY13 over the same period last year, however, has seen reduction in rates in some segments which had an impact on its net interest margin. Dena Bank reported a 23.79 percent rise in net profit to Rs 239.64 crore in the second quarter of current financial year on the back of increase in core income along with sound performance of standard assets.

Ashok Leyland, the Hinduja Group flagship, has launched a range of Haulage trucks fitted with Twin Speed Rear Axles and many other modifications that promises enhanced fuel efficiency of up to 10%. The 'Twin-Speed' technology will allow the driver to shift to fuel-economy mode, while cruising, just by pressing the 'Twin-Speed' button. With the Twin Speed Axle being the primary change the new set of technologies are deployed on 25 and 31 tonne trucks in both 6x2 and 8x2 configurations and are custom designed for the company's driveline. The company has reported 7.45% fall in its net profit at Rs 142.60 crore for the quarter ended September 30, 2012 as compared to Rs 154.08 crore for the same quarter in the previous year. Total income of the company has increased by 6.13% at Rs 3319.91 crore for quarter under review as compared to Rs 3128.28 crore for the quarter ended September 30, 2011.


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