Mumbai: Praj Industries Ltd is investing Rs100 crore for expansion, including acquisition of engineering company, in the US. The board of directors of Praj has approved the proposal at its recent meeting.
The company also plans to invest in a new R&D centre, two manufacturing workshops nearer to the port and expansion of the engineering center at its Pune base.
The company proposes to fund the investment programme from own funds and does not envisage raising any finance. The investments will be carried out over a period of 12-15 months, the company said in a notice to the Bombay Stock Exchange.
Praj is also enhancing its manpower in India with planned addition of over 100 engineers to its existing team.
The company has been actively securing contracts in the US and Europe. Praj has in hand two contracts for ethanol projects in the US while three other orders for supply of technology and engineering (design work) are in the pipeline. The value of the orders is in the region of Rs50 crore ($11 million).
The first two projects are being set up in California while the other plants, with annual capacities of 35 to 100 million gallons, are being planned in the states of Iowa, Minnesota and Missouri. With this, the company has secured a sound base in the US within a span of just 12-18 months.
These contracts were the result of the company's of global experience, qualified manpower and innovative, cost-effective technology, the Praj statement said.
The company has also been making inroads into the European markets. Praj received orders for ethanol plant and equipment from companies in Bulgaria and Romania following its entry into the UK market with an order from British Sugar.
The company will be supplying technology and equipment for wheat- and corn-based plants. The equipment will be designed and manufactured as per EU specifications. The order value is in the region of Rs11 crore.
"Praj has reiterated its position as a global provider of ethanol technology. Within just six months of entering the US market, Praj has contracted several orders from leading ethanol producers / customers. In Europe, too, ethanol producers have started taking note of the Praj's capabilities", said Pramod Chaudhari, chairman, of the company.
Praj also offers solutions for distillery and brewery wastewater treatment and utilistion. With operations covering three continents, including Asia, Africa and South America through its own offices and to other alcohol/beer producing countries through its international operations out of India, Praj is perhaps the world's single largest supplier of molasses based distillery technology, plant and equipment.
Praj reported, the global ethanol technology leader, took on record the unaudited financial results for the.
Praj recorded a 33 per cent rise in sales in the first quarter of the current financial year at Rs81 crore against Rs61 crore in the same quarter of the previous financial year with a PBT of Rs11 crore (Rs6.76 crore). Profit after tax (PAT) increased by 50 per cent to Rs8.4 crore from Rs5.6 crore in the same period of the previous year.