Numaligarh Refinery Ltd. (NRL) located at Assam, is a JV between BPCL (61.65%), Oil India (26%) and Assam Govt (12.35%), having a capacity of 3 million metric tonnes per year. NRL is amongst best-performing refineries in India, with one of the highest distillate yield, lowest specific energy consumption and high gross refining margin (GRM). NRL revenue from operations fell to Rs 14,073 cr, during FY20, against Rs 18,511 cr in FY19, due to lower sales volume and reduction in prices of petroleum products in the international market, due to Covid. PAT was down to Rs 1,381 cr in FY20 against Rs 1,968 cr in FY19. NRL's net worth stood at Rs 5,304 cr as on March 31, 2020. GRM at $11.43 per barrel continued to be one of the best in the industry, due to excise benefits enjoyed by NRL.
BPCL book value of NRL's 62% stake is at Rs. 454 crore. Industry circles are estimating an EV of Rs. 18,000 crore for NRL, being debt free as well. Thus, 61.65% stake translates in a value of about Rs.11,000 crore.
Oil India with Engineers India is in talks to buy BPCL stake in NRL, which is confirmed by top bosses of both the companies, with deal expected to happen by March 2021. This is seen a precursor to BPCL privatisation, as NRL stake will not be part of strategic sale of BPCL. Hence, even if we presume a sale consideration of Rs. 8,000 crore to BPCL, net gain after deducting tax theron, would be about Rs. 6,000 crore. This amount will then surely be distributed as special dividend, which translates into Rs. 30 per share, on 200 crore issued equity shares of Rs. 10 each, of BPCL.
Government is seen keen to expedite the BPCL privatisation process, to mobilise Rs. 60,000 cr, from its 53% stake of BPCL, as also, to send a strong message of will of Govt of priavtisation move.