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Why US giant Black & Veatch is bidding for power projects in India

Source : FIRST BIZ
Feb 3, 2014

 New York: US engineering, consulting and construction giant Black & Veatch is bidding for power and energy projects in Tamil Nadu, Orissa, Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh and investing in its capabilities inIndia, said company officials on Friday.

Kansas-headquartered Black & Veatch has been in India since 1969 and has expanded its offices in Pune and Mumbai to over 400 engineers, energy experts, construction management and engineering design specialists. It has scored high-profile projects in the private sector notably with the Ambani brothers. It is now bidding for a cluster of power projects.

"We are keenly following developments on the two ultra mega power projects in Tamil Nadu and Orissa, NTPC's North Karanpura coal-fired power project in Jharkhand and anticipated power projects in Andhra Pradesh," saidG. Sathiamoorthy, Managing Director of Black & Veatch India.

"We are providing project management services to a large state utility in India for their upcoming 660 megawatt units. We are also very keen to participate in the liquid natural gas (LNG) market in India and have evinced
interest to partner in IOC's upcoming LNG terminal in Ennore," added Sathiamoorthy.

Black & Veatch's size and a strong balance sheet, mean it can bid for big-ticket projects that few others can manage, outlast the notorious delays, and take on complex infrastructure projects. Faced with a deficit of roads, ports and power plants, New Delhi says the country needs to invest at least $1 trillion in infrastructure in the next five years.

"Our value proposition, demonstrated clearly at Jamnagar and Samalkot for example, is speed and quality. This is common across all our Indian business lines: energy, water, oil & gas and telecom," Steve Edwards, chairman,president and CEO of Black & Veatch told Firstpost.

"In India, our services business is currently our strongest area and as we have done in other regions, we are expanding further through engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) growth," added Edwards who is focusedon being part of India's infrastructure growth story.

Indian companies have been seeking out US innovation in the oil refining market as they look to meet stringent environmental regulations with minimal cost impact. Black & Veatch designed the sulfur processing facilitiesat Reliance Petroleum's Jamnagar Refinery. The facility is the first to pair two existing and proven technologies in a way that guarantees removal of 99.9 percent of sulfur from the refinery's acid gases.

The US engineering and construction giant has also worked on Reliance Power's Samalkot power plant and its Sasan and Krishnapatnam multi-unit coal plants.

As one of Black & Veatch's global design centers, the Mumbai office has helped deliver water projects in Australia, Chile, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the US.

"At the core of our expansion plans is investing in our capabilities in India. We've invested in the development of Indian professionals supporting projects in many locations around the world," said Edwards.

The India team has worked on multiple water and wastewater treatment projects for Welsh Water, Anglian Water and Yorkshire Water. It has supported similar water projects in New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Missouri.

"The Indian team has contributed significantly to the success of the business as whole. Now our focus is to use this Indian expertise to deliver world class solutions for the country's complex challenges in power, oil & gas, water and telecom," said Sathiamoorthy.

 

Analysts expect investment activity and India's infrastructure build-out to pick up steam after general elections in May this year. That would be promising for the likes of Black & Veatch.


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