NHPC Diversifies into Solar Power Business

The company plans to act as an intermediary procurer through solar power developers


NHPC Limited (Formerly National Hydroelectric Power Corporation), announced that its board of directors had approved a proposal to diversify the company’s business to include solar power projects.

The hydropower generator said that the company would act as an intermediary procurer through solar power developers.

NHPC Limited, one of the largest hydropower companies in the country, currently has a portfolio comprising about 6.7 GW of projects spread across 24 power stations, according to the company’s website. These projects include the ones that were taken up under joint venture partnerships.

The company also has a 50 MW wind power project in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.

According to Mercom India’s Solar Project Tracker, NHPC Limited, has 50 MW of solar projects in operation in Tamil Nadu. The projects were successfully commissioned in Theni and Dindigul districts of the state.

In April, the Ministry of Power (MoP) announced that NHPC Limited raised ₹7.5 billion (~$99.6 million) through the private placement of bonds at an interest rate of 6.8% per annum for a loan tenure of ten years. It said that this amount included a greenshoe option worth ₹2.5 billion (~$33.2 million). The notice added that this received an overwhelmingly good response and was oversubscribed by nearly four times even amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

Previously, SoftBank, Axis Energy Ventures India Private Limited, O2 Power, EDEN Renewables, and Avaada Energy, won projects under the 2 GW interstate transmission system (ISTS) connected solar tender auctioned by NHPC Limited. Softbank, Axis Energy, O2 Power, and EDEN quoted the lowest (L1) tariff of ₹2.55 (~$0.0339)/kWh in the auction. They were awarded 600 MW, 400 MW, 380 MW, and 300 MW, respectively.

In September 2019, the government-owned hydropower generator had issued the tender inviting bids for 2 GW of solar power projects. The projects were expected to be connected to the ISTS network. Modules for projects under this tender were allowed to be imported under the open category.

Image credit: NHPC Limited