The Anil Ambani-controlled Reliance Power's third-quarter profit surged 30%, surpassing analysts' expectations, helped by higher electricity generation at its 1,200 MW Rosa plant in Uttar Pradesh.
The firm’s net profit for the October-December quarter increased to R266 crore from R204 crore, a year earlier. Its operating revenue more than tripled to R 1,464 crore.
The Rosa plant operated at an availability of103%. It generated 2,407 million units (MUs) of power in the quarter versus 987 MUs a year earlier.
The company reaffirmed its target to start generating electricity at its flagship Sasan project in Madhya Pradesh six months ahead of schedule. "On the construction side, pre-commissioning activities have started at out 3960 MW Sasan UMPP and the project is all set to be commissioned in this quarter, well ahead of bid schedule," R-Power CEO JP Chalasani said in a statement.
R-Power started coal production from its 20-million-tonne-a-year Moher and Moher-Amlohri mines last September, six months ahead of schedule.
The coal mines were transferred to R-Power when it won the competitive bidding process for the ultra mega power plant in 2007. The project had come under scrutiny last year after a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) questioned the allotment of a third mine — Chattrasal to R-Power — alleging that the use of surplus coal resulted in massive financial gains for the company.
The 5 MTPA Chhatrasal coal mines have received a first-stage forest clearance.
The company, which has an operating capacity of 1,840 MW, also recently synchronised the second 300 MW unit of its plant in Butibori, Maharashtra. The first unit of the same capacity was synchronised in the first quarter.
Power from renewable sources also boosted profit in the quarter.
The 40-MW Dhursar solar power plant in Rajasthan generated a record 15.2 million units in the quarter, resulting in a net profit of R12 crore.
India's power producers have been increasingly tapping into renewable sources of energy, such as wind and solar, to help combat a shortage of coal and gas used in conventional thermal plants. Construction work is in progress at the company's upcoming 100 -MW solar power project in Dhursar, Rajasthan, which is expected to start generating electricity in the firs quarter of fiscal 2014. A 45-MW wind project in Maharashtra is also expected to be commissioned by the end of March 2013.
Reliance Power's promoters sold a 5.42% stake in the firm in December to help the Anil Ambani