Chris Bale CEO, Honeywell Energy Resources International Limited (HERIL)
By Chika Amanze-Nwachuku
HoneyWell Group is to spend over $1 billion in the development of power generation and transmission projects in Bayelsa, Ogun and Lagos and States.
Its Chief Executive Officer, Chris Bale, made the disclosure in an interview with THISDAY in Lagos.
According to him, the first phase of the projects is the 150 megawatts power, Akute Oshun project in Ogun State, which was aimed to meet the electricity needs of Lagos, Ogun and other parts of the South-west who he said consume about 45 per cent the electricity generated.
Bale, said the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) had already granted the company a licence for the building of the Ogun power project and assured them that the project would be completed before the end of 2014.
He said: “Right now the group is approaching the next stage of development which is getting the necessary inputs together. We are discussing with Gas Aggregator Company of Nigeria. We have also gotten a Gas Purchase Order (GPO ), very soon negotiation would commence with the gas suppliers. Also, we are holding discussions with Transmission Company of Nigeria for a transmission line to evacuate the power that is going to be accruing from the Akute plant.”
The CEO also disclosed that discussions with the Bulk Trading company was at advanced stage and would be formalise as soon as possible.
He said, Honeywell has the expertise as well as the financial muscle to operate the power companies if it succeeds in the bid process.
Bale, who noted however that as an integrated energy company, Honeywell is not wholly dependent on distribution aspect of the power sector, said: “Our strategy is not to depend on disco, clearly we would like to succeed in the bid process, but if we are not successful we still have these power generation projects to deal with. We see the potential for the housing Project in Ogun state to be 500 megawatts, we are looking at 100mw megawatts in Bayelsa State, we are looking at another 500mw plant closer home and this would be quiet the size of an investment portfolio.”
Throwing more lights on the company’s financial strength, Bale said the firm’s track record was evidenced in various projects it has in Nigeria and other countries.
He added: “ If you look at the HoneyWell group, the flour Mill’s financial position is a matter of public record, and there are additional companies in the HoneyWell group that give you a sense of an established Nigerian company that has the financial capability to do new projects”.
He said: “The company has a long standing involvement in the Nigerian power sector and also has good relationship with investors, and for the growth of the power sector, so we see this as an opportunity to deploy Honeywell group’s resources and bring the much needed investment in the sector from outside the country”.
The company was among the 54 firms that met the July 31 deadline for submission of bids for electricity distribution companies. Specifically, the company bided for Ikeja and Eko Distribution companies (Discos).
Shedding more lights on the company’s interest in distribution networks, he said, apart from the projects in Ogun, Bayela and Lagos, there are other potential projects in other states of the federation.
Corroborating the CEO’s statement , the project director power for the Seun Faluyi said the group was looking at the full value chain from generation to distribution, adding that participating in the bid process for the privatization exercise was just one of the recent steps that the group has taken. “We also have interest in generation that is Independent power projects. A lot of them are at developmental stages.
The project will compliment the Federal Government efforts at providing stable power supply top the country and thereby enhance economic activities that would stimulate employment,” he said.