New Delhi: Taking a dig at private sector competitors to whom it lost bids for 4,000MW ultra mega power plants (UMPPs), state-owned electricity producer NTPC Ltd said it was an ethical company and could best any competitor on a level playing field.
“We cannot go and just start an IPO (initial public offering) and start, say, with a Rs10 equity share at a premium of Rs450-460. If a sort of level playing field is given to us, we will definitely compete,” said NTPC chairman and managing director T. Sankaralingam.
He, however, clarified that he was not speaking about any specific company.
“I know a private company other than Reliance Power Ltd which has done this (IPO)... 110 times more than its issue price,” said NTPC’s chief, who is due to retire on 30 April.
Anil Ambani-promoted Reliance Power, which floated an IPO in January at an issue price of Rs450 a share, has won contracts for two UMPPs, at Sasan in Madhya Pradesh and Krishnapatnam in Andhra Pradesh. Tata Power Co. Ltd will build the UMPP at Mundra in Gujarat.
“As far as NTPC is concerned, ours is an ethical company. We will follow norms and if (these) issues are addressed, I can tell you, you cannot compete with NTPC,” said Sankaralingam.
The winning bid for Sasan was Rs1.19 per kilowatt-hour. NTPC’s bid was Rs2.12.
Sankaralingam clarified that he was not criticizing anybody and said “it is their business style... I am only telling the constraints which a government company has”.
NTPC has a total installed capacity of 29,144MW. It is diversifying into power equipment manufacturing in a joint venture with Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd.