London-listed miner Vedanta Resources said on Sunday it has entered the port sector by tying up with the Australia-based Leighton Contractors to form a joint venture with its flagship Indian firm Sterlite Industries.
The 74:26 joint venture, Sterlite-Leighton, has already tied up two projects worth Rs900 crore from the Vizag and Paradeep ports, Sterlite said on the sidelines of declaring its earnings for the quarter to June. Sterlite holds 74 per cent stake in the JV and rest is held by the Australian infrastructure firm.
"We have entered the port business through a contract to develop a coal berth at Vizag on a revenue-sharing basis in a joint venture with Leighton Contractors India. An agreement has been signed with the Vizag Port authorities, and the estimated cost of the project, which is likely to be completed in mid-2012, is Rs 500 crore.
"The company, along with the joint venture partner Leighton, has also been awarded the project for development of a multipurpose berth on a revenue-sharing basis at the Paradeep Port. The indicative cost of the project is likely to be Rs 400 crore," Sterlite said in a statement.
Vedanta Resources' chief financial officer D D Jalan said during an analyst conference call, "The port business is being undertaken by subsidiary of Sterlite. The mining and metals business and the port business are very much (interlinked) ... and it will contribute to our growth."
The metals and mining group, which produces metals and minerals like copper, zinc, lead, iron ore, aluminium, bauxite, posted a 50 per cent jump in its net profit to Rs1,008.43 crore for the first quarter of this fiscal on improved demand and better prices.