In an exclusive and candid interview to Vivek Avasthi, Editor-in-Chief of www.indianpsu.com – P.K. Gupta, Chairman-cum-Managing Director of at NBCC (India) Limited, a blue-chip Government of India Navratna Enterprise under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA), talks about the company’s unique business model and International forays today, that made it stand out as a leader in its own right in the Indian Construction sector and spreading its wings abroad also explains about how it is transforming, yet again, to adapt to growth areas.
Question – Mr. Gupta, congratulations for a stellar performance in Q3 with a profit of Rs. 82 crore, what positive factors were behind this?
Answer – Construction industry was experiencing a purple patch during the time of Pandemic and similarly NBCC was also affected by the overall market fluctuations. But fortunately, things are better off now in the construction industry and with the resumption of operations in all sectors especially construction, housing and infrastructure, we are also looking forward to a sustainable long-term growth now.
As far as the performance of Q3 is concerned, all I say is that we became tougher than the situation we were in and the tireless efforts by NBCC employees could finally make NBCC putting up a reasonably good performance in the final count. At a market cap of Rs.8300 Cr., NBCC’s stock has been up for six straight months. The stock has doubled from the lows of October 20.
Apart from these, lot of new initiatives brought about positive business outcome even during the crisis. Fast-track execution of Amarpali Projects, Nauroji Nagar redevelopment works, Bharat Vandana Park, IECC Pragati Maidan project work, AIIMS projects at various places, real-estate inventory sale etc. all that took off during the year with a promise for the future growth of the company.
Question – How does your present order book look like?
Answer – Our order book crossed Rs. 60,000 Cr. in FY20-21. The momentum will continue as our goal is to work towards the development of best infrastructure across the nation. Today, NBCC has become an undisputed leader in construction sector with its unmatched capabilities and a dedicated workforce. This has resulted in bringing in a change with innovative concepts and by adhering to the highest quality standards and timely deliveries of valued projects. Our operations drive on three primary segments — Project Management Consultancy (PMC), Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) and Real Estate Development. Also, we have added very large-value contracts – valuing at Rs. 3360 Cr.
Question – What is the outlook for NBCC regarding projects of Jaypee Infratech?
Answer – NBCC is awaiting the Hon’ble Supreme Court order on the issue. Our position remains the same and we are committed to the resolution plan that we had submitted for completion of 20,000 incomplete units and would execute it once the apex court delivers the order. Therefore, we hope that the issue shall be resolved soon and NBCC will go ahead with the implementation.
Question – How do you aim to further increase your foothold in the international market?
Answer – Initiated tapping foreign forays in the year 1977, Company is poised to increase the same manifold. NBCC is also one of the nominated companies by Government of India (GoI) exclusively for building and construction works in overseas market.
NBCC is presently implementing mega projects in Mauritius, African Countries, Dubai, Maldives, Seychelles, etc. We have already implemented various projects of diverse nature in different countries and earned consistent revenue. Company has consistently worked in Iraq, Maldives, Nepal, Turkey, Libya, Yemen, Mauritius, Botswana, Niger.
Besides, mega social housing project with 2000 residential units in Maldives is part of the numerous overseas projects which are under discussion based on buyer’s credit and this project is likely to come up shortly. Buyer’s Credit is one of unique avenues for NBCC to secure new business in overseas market.
Several other large-value projects are at the discussion stage. We are in discussion with the government of Nigeria regarding their hospital and road works. We have recently started discussion with the government of Ghana regarding infrastructure projects.
Question – Has the sluggish real estate market impacted the growth story of NBCC?
Answer – It can’t be denied that NBCC was also affected from sluggish real estate conditions. However, NBCC with its strong customer base of PSUs/ Government Departments and individual buyers, kept the sales momentum going. The transparent mechanism of NBCC has attracted buyers’ sentiments in the environment of uncertainty in Real estate sector.
Buyers now-a-days want to be safe with their Real Estate investments and NBCC is undoubtedly the name to rely upon. We may like to highlight the fact that even in the times of Pandemic; NBCC received great response towards its sale launch. The response towards other schemes is also satisfactory and improving as the market conditions are getting better. We are hopeful for a great and meaningful FY 2021-22.
Question – What is the status of NBCC viz Hemisphere Properties and development of its land bank?
Answer – Hemisphere property under MoHUA has acquired land assets of sick VSNL with it. NBCC has no stake so far in this project.
Question – NBCC is the new ray of hope for thousands of homebuyers, how do you plan to speed up the Amrapali projects in hand?
Answer – Definitely, execution levels are picking up. We are almost past the cornoa period and our execution is now about 85 percent capacity what it could be.
Just to give a brief background – The total cost of completing all stuck projects by Amrapali Group is approximately Rs. 8500 Crore and NBCC has been entrusted by the Apex Court for execution of these stalled projects of Amrapali Group as a PMC and would get 8 percent as fees. Ld. Court Receiver appointed by the Supreme Court is facilitating funds for project completion. More than 40,000 homebuyers had invested in various Amrapali projects more than eight years ago. With the support of the apex court, NBCC has already completed and handed over two stalled projects, while execution of 22 more projects is currently in progress with the funds made available by the apex court.
Today, the works of the balance projects of Amrapali is going-on in full swing and is considered as the top priority in the list of project completion and delivery by the company. NBCC’s aim is to provide a relief for embattled homebuyers who are yet to get possession of their houses in the stalled Amrapali Group projects.
Status of Amrapali Projects: (as on 17th March 2021)
• Total incomplete inventory of approximately 46575 units
• NBCC has completed 2 projects, Eden Park in Noida & Castle in Greater Noida having 618 units involving Rs.7.50 Cr.
• At present, 22 projects having 45957 units involving Rs.7842.45 Cr. are under execution in full swing.
• Tech Park – Commercial Project, yet to be tendered (Estimated cost Rs.339.87 Cr.) (sanction is awaited from Ld. Court Receiver.)
• NBCC has completed and started to hand over of incomplete Units to Ld. C.R/Committee/Home Buyers. NBCC has already handed over 73 Flats to home buyers in various projects and 1257 flats have already been completed (including 73 units) till Feb. 2021.
NBCC has launched the sale of 52 residential and commercial units in 1st Phase on 07.02.2021.
Question – Even the Corona Pandemic could not stop the growth story of NBCC, any trade secrets you would like to share?
Answer – At present, with availability of workers and gradual stability in supply chain of out their respective responsibilities has finally made NBCC putting materials, the market is expected to have positive growth trend and speedy recovery of activities that were halted due to nationwide lockdown in late March 2020. As far as NBCC is concerned, the Pandemic impact was evident across all parameters but eventually works picked up and now the sales are back to normal. It is important to highlight that the tireless efforts and unwavering commitment of our employees and business associates towards carrying up as an efficient performer in the final count.
The prime objective of the company is to uphold honesty, integrity and transparency. The core values of the Company are to continue to be the building block of the nation by providing high quality, sustainable infrastructure development across the nation through innovative & world class construction solutions and optimizing value for all stakeholders and providing utmost customer satisfaction. Keeping all this in mind, I would say that NBCC has quite a different work model which is unique on its own.
Question – How has the PSU contributed towards CSR activity and PM Cares Fund in this financial year?
Answer – NBCC has always been committed to the nation building and contributing to the society consistently being a responsible corporate organization. The company works with communities near its operation to implement a range of programs that can positively impact their lives.
• Contribution to the PM CARES Fund in wake of COVID-19- COVID-19 pandemic threw all activities completely out of gear. Organizations across, also got impacted heavily where Finance Management became a challenge. NBCC contributed Rs.2 Cr. towards Prime Minister CARES Fund to provide support to the GoI in its quest to mitigate Pandemic COVID-19. In the eleventh hour of adversity, it was our responsibility to provide support for strengthening the fight against COVID-19. Thus, we extended our helping hand to mitigate the unforeseen hardship brought about by
COVID-19. Recently NBCC has also contributed to the India’s largest vaccination drive of COVID-19 – a sum of Rs.150.00 lakhs towards facilitating COVID-19 vaccination program has been contributed by the company. Along with this, the Employees of NBCC also contributed their one day salary to PM Relief Fund, as solidarity to support the initiatives of Government in fighting Covid19.
• Contribution for fitment of Cochlear Implants to the children with hearing impairment with (ALIMCO) – From the CSR Funds, NBCC has recently signed a Bipartite MoU with ALIMCO for contributing Rs.100.62 lakhs for fitment of Cochlear Implants to the children with hearing impairment (ALIMCO) to 15 children from Aspirational Districts.