The following article is an initiative of JSPL and is intended to create awareness among readers
Every organization can get some inspiration from Jindal Steel & Power Limited (JSPL), which despite several setbacks emerged stronger and turned its Odisha’s Angul plant into a success.
JSPL received a jolt when the Supreme Court cancelled all the coal blocks in 2014. Its captive blocks got cancelled and the company also had to pay Rs 3,500 crore.
Moreover, JSPL had invested thousands of crores in various power and steel projects across the country, most of them dependent on coal from its captive mines. One of the biggest investments were setting up an integrated steel plant at Angul, Odisha, also dubbed as ‘Jewel in the crown of Odisha’ by JSPL chairman Naveen Jindal.
“All our plans in last two decades... and we had made investments of Rs. 75,000 crores, whether it was in power projects or steel projects, and we used to plan and we used to take pride that we want to plan projects based on indigenous coal, based on swadeshi coal... If today those coal blocks were not cancelled, power would have been flowing like water in the country,” said Jindal.
In this backdrop, many analysts wrote off the company and pointed at the company’s massive debt burden of Rs. 42,000 crore.
Jindal said, “Everyone was dejected and concerned and we all started to work to establish the blast Furnace and produce steel here (Angul). We got busy and rather than crying over spilled milk, we got all our energies united for Blast Furnace in record time.”
N.A. Ansari, CEO, JSPL, said, “Here, we decided to make synthetic gas out of the local coal available. The entire leadership and workforce galvanised into action and decided not to allow this plant to shut down.”
The steely resolve of the top management and team work and dedication of the workers turned things around within four years of the crisis. The company scripted a winning story after 13th quarter on standalone basis last fiscal. It made Rs 110 crore profit on consolidated basis in the first quarter of current fiscal.
Meanwhile, Angul plant boasts of many firsts. At 3.2 million tonones per annum (mpta), this is India’s largest blast furnace.
Angul has India’s largest 4 MTPA Sinter Plant, India’s largest high speed 2.3 MTPA Billet Caster, world’s largest Rebar Mill of 1.5 MTPA and India’s most advanced Plate Mill of 1.2 MTPA capacity. The core strength of Angul Steel Plant is the India’s largest 4554 m3 blast furnace built on 80 Acres of land that handles Steel Plant setup in phase-1 with 4.5 MTPA capacity. The furnace has to feed 6 MTPA steel plant in years to come.
The Industrial Marvel has world’s largest Syngas based 1.8 MTPA DRI Plant based on Coal Gasification Process (CGP), Coke Oven with 2 MTPA capacity, 810 MW captive power plant, 50,000 MT raw material handling facility, gigantic 6 MTPA steel melting shop.
Going forward, the capacity of the Angul plant can go up to 12.5 million tonnes per annum with an on-ground infrastructure expansion capable to host a plant of this capacity.
Another highlight of the plant is the world’s largest SynGas based two mpta DRI Plant based on Coal Gasification Process (CGP). This plant uses locally available coal, gassifies it and then used this synthetic gas to produce Directly Reduced Iron. The commissioning of the integrated steel plant at Angul has made JSPL the fourth largest steel producer in the country with a capacity of nine mpta.
Jindal said, “All our stakeholders, whether it is our suppliers, banks, customers- everyone understood the way we were coming from. The fact that we had to pay almost, Rs 3500 crore of additional levy. So it was a huge burden on the company but rather than we took this challenge in our stride and worked harder. We are very confident that going forward we are going to emerge stronger. It is already evident as in Q2 FY19, JSPL reported net profit of Rs 279 crore. Despite seasonal weakness due to monsoon, the Angul production continued to go up with the blast furnace achieving production levels of more than 9000 tonnes per day. With Angul production ramping up, JSPL standalone steel production rose 46% to 1.30 million tonnes, while standalone steel sales during Q2 FY19 increased to 1.28 million tonnes.”It is upon people to turn adversities into challenges and emerge stronger. JSPL’s techniques, logistics, workforce, and dedication helped in making Angul steel plant a success, and a lesson for everyone to follow.