Patanjali to diversify into solar power business
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Ayurved Ltd, the consumer goods products upstart, is poised to diversify into solar power equipment manufacturing.
“Getting into solar is in line with the swadeshi movement. With solar, each household in India can have power supply, and we are here to make that happen,” Acharya Balkrishna, managing director of Patanjali Ayurved, said in an interview.
This will be the company’s first exposure to the infrastructure sector and comes after its runaway success in consumer products.
Patanjali Ayurved, which was set up in 2006, has grown at a stunning pace, increasing its revenue more than fivefold to Rs10,561 crore in the year to 31 March from Rs2,006 crore in 2014-15; it aims to cross Rs20,000-25,000 crore in sales by 31 March 2018.
Just like it identified the opportunity to compete with established multinational packaged consumer goods companies, Patanjali is seeing a opening for itself in solar equipment manufacturing.
The government is considering a 30% capital subsidy as part of a new solar manufacturing policy.
India is working to improve its per capita power consumption of around 1,200 kilowatt hours (kWh), among the lowest in the world. Alongside, it is also proposing a “rent a roof” policy to support its ambitious plan of generating 40 gigawatts (GW) of solar power by 2022.
“The government has been working on the solar industry, and even offering sops. We will manufacture solar panels in India without compromising the quality. But we are not going to get into the price war with the Chinese solar panels,” Balkrishna added.
Mint reported on 7 September that poor-quality Chinese solar modules, rejected by developers, were being sold in the domestic market at a discount. Solar modules or panels account for nearly 60% of a solar power project’s cost.
For China’s solar panel manufacturing industry, with an estimated capacity of around 70GW per year, the US and India are major markets.