Punj Lloyd Emerging Strong and Stronger . . .
“Punj Lloyd Group has well entrenched itself as a diversified international EPC conglomerate. We partner with the world's best players in pursuit of new opportunities in the global marketplace and through strategic acquisitions and joint ventures, our portfolio includes engineering, petrochemicals, renewables, high-spec buildings and important infrastructure projects like airports, mass rapid and light rail transit systems etc. We have been actively involved in the power sector, both thermal and nuclear. Despite various hiccups and challenges for the overall infrastructure sector in the past two years, we have been able to secure big orders as our strategy has always been to work in different geographies to ward off the risk of a particular region. Our proven expertise in the EPC domain ensures that we remain on track to maintain our consistent growth,” says Mr. Atul Punj, Chairman, Punj Lloyd in an interview with S.A.Faridi.

What work ethos, culture and value system is the Punj Group following to achieve the stature of a diversified conglomerate.
With a turnover of US $ 1.8 billion, Punj Lloyd Group has established itself as a diversified international conglomerate present in 20 countries now. The group, which has 27,000 skilled multicultural workforce from 37 different nationalities, has the experience of working in different geographies and diverse terrain, aggressively pursuing its vigorous plans. The Group has enshrined honesty, integrity and equality in all its activities, including safety, security, human and environmental ethics. The Group's determination to make a valuable difference to its work and stakeholders has contributed to the company's growth from a small pipeline company to a diversified international conglomerate providing EPC services in Energy and Infrastructure along with engineering and manufacturing capabilities in the Defence sector.

What are the focused business areas? Are Punj Lloyd's brand companies pursuing them?
The focus business areas of the Punj Lloyd Group have been EPC services in energy and infrastructure, as well as engineering and manufacturing capabilities in the defence sector. The Group has three major brands:
  • Punj Lloyd Limited, which provides integrated design, engineering, procurement, construction and project management services in the energy and infrastructure sectors.
  • PL Engineering, which is a leading consultancy and services organization that provides solutions to customers' engineering and business challenges by harnessing the best-in-class talent pool, process rigor, knowledge and experience.
  • Sembawang Engineers & Constructors which is one of the largest engineering and construction companies in South East Asia, managing projects around the globe from its headquarters in Singapore.
In addition, the Group has been fast to explore potential opportunities in various businesses. It set up Punj Lloyd Delta Renewables, a subsidiary to pursue renewable energy based projects throughout the world and also incorporated Punj Lloyd Upstream to address the opportunities in the Integrated Drilling Services market.

What are your benchmark projects?
Some key benchmark projects by Punj Lloyd are:

India
Heera Redevelopment Offshore Platform, Hydrocracker Unit & Hydrogen Generation Unit, Haldia Refinery, Medanta, the Medicity, Design and construction of elevated viaduct including structural work of four Stations for Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, India Construction of Eight Stations and Viaduct, Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation, Upgradation of the Belgaum-Maharashtra Border Highway Section of NH-4 in Karnataka, Projects for the Golden Quadrilateral including East West and North South Corridors, All 3 LNG terminals in India – Dabhol, Hazira, Dahej - The only contractor involved in the construction of all the three terminals in India, Sikkim Airport Project, India's largest solar based EPC project in Bihar implementation of 850 Solar-Powered Water Treatment Plants.

South East Asia
Marina Bay Sands Integrated Resort's, North Podium comprising the Casino, Theatres and Retail Arcade, Singapore, Hotels, Beach Villas, Oceanarium and Water Theme Park for Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore, Jurong Bulk Liquid Product Terminal, Horizon Terminals Pte. Ltd. – Singapore, Terminal extension, runways, hangars and control towers, to support facilities such as training centres, freights and cargo terminals, in-flight catering centres and MRT system for Asia's major aviation hub, the award winning Changi Airport, Singapore, Paya Lebar Tunnel, design and construction of 5.1km long, 6.5m internal diameter and 30m deep tunnel and 6 shafts, Singapore, Sabah Sarawak Pipeline Project, Malaysia.

Europe
Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Crude Oil Pipeline Project, Turkey, Commissioned World's largest wheat based ethanol plant in the UK.

Middle East
Strategic Gas transmission project, Qatar, Asab Gas development project phase II, Abu Dhabi, EPC for 300 KTPA  LDPE plant, Iran, The Jumeirah Islands Villa Project, Dubai, Gas Export Pipeline, Oman, OGC Pipelines, Oman.

A word about some of the tallest and intelligent buildings the Group has developed and constructed abroad. How are they proving to be most sought-after due to quality attributes?
Punj Lloyd Group has built some of the tallest, most intelligent and exquisite buildings in major cities, turning them into architectural icons and the most sought after commercial spaces. This includes Tianjin International Building, The Exchange & Yangtze Plaza in China and German Centre for Industry & Trade in Singapore. In the Healthcare sector, apart from constructing Medanta, The Medicity, one of India's largest multi-super specialty institutes, the Group is also undertaking the construction of a Medical College and a Hostel Complex at AIIMS, Raipur and planning, design and construction of three medical colleges in West Bengal. The Group has also undertaken some of the most exquisite residential buildings in the world including 'Planet Godrej' in India, the Jumeirah Islands Villa project in Dubai, The Edge on Cairnhill in Singapore and the Riffa Views luxury villas, the first residential golf community in UAE.

Punj Lloyd Group has been able to establish its credential and specialization in undertaking EPC projects. What are the important EPC projects in India and abroad in hand?

Punj Lloyd Emerging Strong and Stronger . . .

We are a global EPC conglomerate with a wide portfolio in tanks, terminals, refineries, offshore, pipelines, onshore field development, onshore drilling, polymers & petrochemicals thermal & nuclear power plants, renewables and civil infrastructure.

Some of our important EPC projects in India include a contract worth Rs.826 crore from Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation for a submarine pipeline project in an exploration block on the east coast of our country.

Punj Lloyd is executing an EPC Nuclear Power contract from NPCIL worth Rs 678 crore for critical nuclear piping work at four Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR) of 700 MWe (Mega Watt electric) each.

The company is working on India's largest Solar based EPC project for 850 water treatment plants in Bihar. We are also developing a 5 MW PV-based solar plant in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. This project is part of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM).

The company is also executing a contract worth Rs.1123 crore from Indian Oil Corporation Limited for Paradip Refinery. This EPC project is for Kero Treatment Unit, Sulphur Recovery Unit, FCC LPG Treatment Unit, FCC Light Naphtha Treatment Unit, Alkylation Unit, Butane Isomerisation Unit, Spent Acid Regeneration Unit. In addition to this, the company will also be constructing Flue Gas Desulphurisation Unit for the Lumpsum Turnkey Package B of the IOCL Paradip Refinery Project.

Punj Lloyd is undertaking a prestigious contract worth Rs.539 crore from GAIL for laying gas pipe line and terminal work from Dabhol to Bangalore. The contract involves laying 7 spreads comprising 820 km of the pipeline in very hilly and challenging terrain.

In Oman, Punj Lloyd was awarded a Rs.323-crore project by Petroleum Company Occidental Mukhaizna for engineering, procurement and construction of a new water treatment plant. The plant will generate steam to be injected into the oil fields in Mukhaizna for extraction of oil. The scope of work also includes upgradation of the central processing facilities. In Indonesia, Punj Lloyd has bagged the EPCIC project worth Rs.271 crore from Pertamina. The scope of work for the contract includes engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning (EPCIC) of three well-head platforms and laying three segments of 18.6 km of offshore gas pipeline, along with subsea 'wye' installation in existing pipeline without any shut down. The scope of work also includes EPCIC for restaging and reconfiguration of two compressor trains, including deck extension and platform modification work.

We are working on the longest gas pipeline in Malaysia, Sabah Sarawak Pipeline Project. Other prestigious ongoing international projects include an offshore project for installing three compressor units for the platform compressor station on the PTT Riser Offshore Platform at water depths of up to 80 meters in the Gulf of Thailand, an EPC contract for the Shah Gas Development project in Abu Dhabi in consortium with Technicas Reunidas of Spain, EPC of offsite pipelines for Saudi Aramco's Yanbu' Export Refinery Project and a contract from Singapore's landmark integrated resort Resorts World Sentosa for the construction of the Equarius Hotel, a world class spa, beach villas, an oceanarium, and a water theme park.

The Group has a sound track record of successful acquisition of reputed overseas companies and forging JV partnerships in different countries. How would these acquisitions and JV partnering leverage the Group's expertise to enable it to provide end-to-end design, engineering procurement and project management expertise and create a powerful EPC brand within the country and abroad?
With our reputation in EPC well established, we partner with the world's best players in pursuit of new opportunities in the global marketplace. Through strategic acquisitions and joint ventures, our portfolio includes engineering, petrochemicals, renewables, high-spec buildings and infrastructure like airports, jetties, mass rapid and light rail transit systems, luxury hotels and resorts and offshore. The diversity of our partners has increased the range of our expertise - niche engineering, oil drilling, aviation, insulation services for varied sectors, while making significant inroads into the fields of defence and nuclear energy. With our global outlook and our international partners, we can take on anything, anywhere in the world.

The Group has the best technical managerial talent and core competence in its command for all its business areas. What are the systems placed within to ensure that the Group's technical and managerial prowess is kept abreast with global developments through training, retraining and attracting best talent at the entry level and upgrading them so as to ward off the possibility of any manpower crunch?
Recruiting and nurturing talent is the most important aspect. At Punj Lloyd, we have well established training programmes to upgrade the skills of technical and managerial manpower.

Skilled workmen are the key differentiator between Punj Lloyd and competition. Our Craftsmen Training Institute at Banmore in India upgrades and develops workmen skill sets. Onsite training includes a broad range of advanced and result-oriented programmes designed for the need of the construction industry. This training also extends to technical, behavioural, ERP and management, comprising both classroom and hands on sessions, with performance strictly evaluated.

In another initiative, we have also partnered with Management Development Institute to launch a programme that trains project managers on the commercial and financial aspects of business. This programme educates our managers on the criticality of management decisions with regard to top line and bottom line projects.

In a landmark move, Punj Lloyd has shown its commitment towards enhancing the nation's management resource by partnering with Indian School of Business (ISB) to set up its new centre at Mohali. Punj Lloyd is among the four Founder Supporters who have contributed towards the development of ISB Mohali. With the help of this prominent partnership with the premier business school, for the first time management courses in Infrastructure will be available to students in India.

Punj Lloyd has recently adopted ITI (Industrial Training Institute), Narela, which is among the 14 other ITIs being run by Department of Technical Education & Vocational Training, Govt. of Delhi. The institute is built in an area of 5 acres and has over 10000 sq. m of workshop area. It currently offers industrial training in 14 different trades with training capacity of approx. 500 trainees. Punj Lloyd is now working towards the expansion and development of the institute by improving the infrastructure and adding new courses to the curriculum.

Punj Lloyd Emerging Strong and Stronger . . .

A word about the Group's involvement in the power sector, thermal and nuclear and plans at hand to be more pro-active in this fast-emerging sector.
Punj Lloyd has been actively involved in the power sector, both thermal and nuclear. In the thermal sector, Punj Lloyd provides EPC services for the complete civil construction and balance of power plant packages, besides developing optimum design for auxiliary packages like coal and ash handling, HVAC, water systems, fire fighting systems, electrical and C&I. Focusing on partnering with Independent Power Producers (IPPs) to become their preferred EPC partner for balance of plant, Punj Lloyd is among the leading BOP solution providers in India.

In the nuclear sector, the Group has delivered some of the world's first nuclear power facilities. The company has provided services in the design and construction of associated nuclear process facilities in areas such as enrichment, fuel fabrication, new build and decommissioning including waste treatment. The company was involved in nuclear power projects in the UK, which include New Fuel Oxide Plant, Vitrification Plant and Refurbishment South Dissolver Cell. We have recently bagged an EPC Nuclear Power contract from NPCIL worth Rs.678 crore for critical nuclear piping work at four Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR) of 700 MWe (Mega Watt electric) each.

Also, keeping in mind the environmental and sustainability issues associated with the production of fuel and energy-using conventional methods and the growing global demand for alternative renewable sources, the Group has formed Punj Lloyd Delta Renewables which develops, engineers and executes renewable energy-based projects throughout the world.

Do you think that the past two years have been challenging and despite this the Group operated smoothly. What has been the growth rate in the order book and the delivery of assured end products during these years? How does the Group look not only to sustain that growth but also to excel to be the top EPC Group in the infrastructure space and its market in the coming two to three years?
The past two years have been challenging for the overall infrastructure industry. There were stumbling blocks in the form of rising interest rates and commodity prices, political turmoil and the recent unrest in Libya. However, we have been able to secure big orders as our strategy has always been to work in different geographies, thereby mitigating the risk from one particular region. Our strong order backlog of Rs.25,199 crore and our proven expertise in the EPC domain ensures that we remain on track to maintain our consistent growth.
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