Hind Glass eyes floatglass foray

Hindusthan National Glass & Industries Ltd (HNG) of the Somany group, one of the leading manufacturers of glass containers in the country, is planning to float a subsidiary to foray into floatglass business.

The company has already initiated discussion with few overseas floatglass companies for technical tie up for the new line of business. The joint managing director of HNG, Mukul Somany informed that it is now doing a market survey on floatglass industry.The survey report is expected in December. After that it would take a decision whether to go alone or to induct a strategic partner for the new business. "We shall take up the project in March 2006 and likely to complete it in 18 months," he said.

According to Somany, the group has estimated an investment of around Rs 500 crore for the new business venture.

"We are planning to invest around Rs 750 crore in next 3-4 years. Apart from the new business we shall invest around Rs 250 crore for technical upgradation of our existing facilities. We shall decide about the financing next year," he said.

HNG has production facility at Rishra in West Bengal, Haryana, Pondicherry and Uttaranchal. The company recently acquired glass container unit of L&T at Nasik in Maharashtra. The HNG joint MD claimed that after the acquisition of glass container unit of L&T, the company now had 63 per cent marketshare in the glass container industry in the country.

"Earlier we used to have 56 per cent marketshare," he said. According to Somany, the combined capacity of glass container of HNG is around 2150 ton per day. It was planning to expand the capacity to 3,000 ton per day by 2008. Commenting on its foray into floatglas business, he said that the size of the floatglass market at Rs 3,500 crore was bigger than Rs 1,400 crore glass container market.

The company was looking at 15 per cent marketshare in the floatglass mart.

Other major players in this segment included Gujarat Guardian and Saint Gobain.HNG registered a turnover of Rs 418 crore and a net profit of Rs 31.5 crore in 2004-05.

600450 Hind Glass eyes floatglass foray glassonweb.com

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