Master Of The Game
BHEL has grown in stature and dominance in the past few years under the able stewardship of Atul Sobti
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Atul Sobti, the 60-year-old Chairman and Managing Director of BHEL or Bharat Heavy Electricals, a Maharatna company, is a power industry veteran. And the company has benefited immensely under his stewardship, be it in terms of market share, growth in revenue or new work orders.
BHEL closed the financial year 2018-19 with a robust top and bottom line growth, thanks to strategic initiatives taken by the company. Its standalone net profit jumped 50 per cent to Rs 1,215 crore during FY19, against Rs 807 crore in the previous fiscal while the standalone revenue grew 5.4 per cent to Rs 29,349 crore as against Rs 27,850 crore in FY18. On a consolidated basis, it logged a profit of Rs 1,009 crore compared to Rs 438 crore in the previous fiscal. Revenue also increased to Rs 31,000 crore from Rs 29,500 crore in FY18.
During the year, BHEL booked the highest-ever N4 orders in its transportation business segment and spares and services, developed in-house India’s first state-of-the-art regenerative braking system for 5000 HP WAG-7 electric locomotive and delivered BHEL’s first 6,000 HP electric locomotive to Indian Railways.
Sobti joined the board as an additional director way back in October 2013, and took charge at the helm at BHEL in January 2016. Prior to that he was heading two portfolios of power and finance. Earlier, he held the additional charge of Director (Engineering, R&D). Sobti was also part-time Chairman of the board of Raichur Power Corporation, a joint venture of BHEL and Karnataka Power Corporation.
A graduate in mechanical engineering and a post-graduate in international management, Sobti also holds a diploma in project management. Prior to joining the board of BHEL Sobti worked in various divisions of the company including International Operations; Manufacturing, Corporate planning and Development; New Capital Projects; and Project Engineering and Systems Integration divisions at Hyderabad and Bangalore. Sobti has also gone through advanced management programmes at the Asian Institute of Management, Manila, and at IIM Ahmedabad.
During his tenure at BHEL’s International Operations, the division witnessed a 15-fold increase in its overseas business by securing and executing orders for prestigious power projects and for standalone products from many countries including Oman, UAE, Iraq, Libya, China, Kazakhstan, Suriname, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Egypt, Kuwait, and Ukraine, etc.
As a member of New Capital Projects Group, Sobti was actively associated with the setting up of new BHEL plants at Rudrapur, Varanasi, PCRI-Haridwar, Jagdishpur, and Goindwal, etc. He was involved in drawing corporate plans of BHEL as well as creating the vision, mission and values for the company.
Recognising his contribution to the power sector development, Sobti has been honoured with the ‘CBIP Special Recognition 2018 for Excellent Contribution in Power Sector Development’ by the Central Board of Irrigation and Power, the Personalities Award by the Institution of Engineers (India) and the India Pride Award for Excellence among central PSUs.
For the uninitiated, BHEL, established in 1964, is India’s largest power generation equipment manufacturer. The company is engaged in the design, engineering, manufacturing, construction, testing, commissioning and servicing of a wide range of products, systems and services for the core sectors of the economy, viz. power, transmission, industry, transportation, renewable energy, oil & gas and defence.