India's biggest power producers, leading conglomerates and marquee private equity players are lining up as potential suitors for the Rajasthan state government owned Chhabra thermal power plant, sources familiar with the deal said.
"Adani Power, JSW Energy, Piramal Enterprises, a jv between Tata Power and ICICI Ventures , NTPC & Macquarie Group are amongst initial suitors that have expressed a preliminary interest in the plant during a pre-bid meeting held earlier this month which was organized by Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Limited," said one of the two sources cited above.
The Chhabra plant has four operational units of 250 MW each and two under construction units of 660 MW each. “Based on initial estimates, the project has an enterprise value of Rs 14,000 crores. The entire necessary infrastructure is in place including fuel tie-ups and statutory clearances," added another source.
In February this year, the Rajasthan government decided to divest the Chhabra plant as well as the Kalisindhi plant in a bid to reduce losses.
"The Chhabra project had incurred losses earlier but is on its way to profitability. The state government is keen to infuse higher efficiency through the divestment process", sources added.
Tata Power, ICICI Ventures, Piramal Enterprises and Macquarie declined to comment in response to queries on the proposed divestment from the source. The source is awaiting responses from Adani Power, JSW Energy and NTPC.