Mumbai: Hindalco Industries Limited, flagship company of the Aditya Birla Group, has entered into a joint venture with Almex USA Inc for the manufacture of high-grade aluminium alloys for applications in the aerospace, sport goods and surface transport industries.
Hindalco will have 70 per cent equity stake in the joint venture, to be called Hindalco-Almex Aerospace Limited, with Almex holding the balance 30 per cent.
"In line with our growth aspirations, we are aggressively ramping up our portfolio of value-added products. Getting into high-strength alloys is a part of our strategic growth initiative. Today, 60 per cent of our products are value-added and we expect to scale this up, going forward," said group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla.
"This is a great opportunity for Hindalco at a time when the aviation industry is slated to be on an upswing. Its foray in this segment catapults Hindalco into a different league, joining as it does an exclusive band of global players in this high technology sector," said Debu Bhattacharya, managing director of Hindalco.
Hindalco proposes to market a large proportion of the new company's output overseas. Domestic demand for high-strength aluminium alloys is currently small. The demand, however, is likely to pick up as India's aerospace sector takes off.
The joint venture, involving a capital outlay of Rs155 crore, expects to attain a production level of 46,000 tonnes in phases over three to four years. Production is expected to commence in the first quarter of 2008.
Hindalco, the largest integrated aluminium manufacturer in the country, has a separate business division for copper and is an industry leader in both these segments. Hindalco recorded a turnover of Rs11,396 crore and a net income of Rs1,655 crore FY 2006.
Hindalco is one of Asia's largest producers of primary aluminium and one of the most cost-efficient producers globally. In India, Hindalco enjoys a leadership position in speciality alumina, primary aluminium and downstream products.
The company has smelters at Hirakud, Orissa, with a captive power plant and coal mines, and at Alupuram, Kerala. It also has rolled product manufacturing facilities at Belur and Taloja, and an extrusion plant is situated at Alupuram.
Hindalco operates foil plants in Silvassa and in Kalwa, Maharashtra. It has also a wheels plant at Silvassa. The company has two R&D centres at Belgaum in Karnataks and at Taloja in Maharashtra.
The joint venture will have its registered office in Maharashtra. The location of the manufacturing facility is yet to be finalised.
Almex USA is a technology supplier and equipment manufacturing company based in Los Angeles, California. Almex is a leading supplier of aerospace and hard alloy aluminum billet casting technology and equipment.
Almex provides an all-new combination of products and services for melting, molten aluminum purification and DC casting.