Pune-based company uses cutting-edge technology to ride the ethanol wave

Central government push for ethanol and warm reception from the sugar industry has seen many engineering companies ride the wave. Regreen Excel Private Limited, based in Pune, is one such company that has ridden this wave which has seen them transform from a consultancy into a turnkey operator for ethanol plants.

Sanjay Desai, President and CEO of the company, said their eMax technology has given them a price advantage over other players and secured them more projects. The eMax technology reduces the energy consumption for the production of ethanol and also makes it possible to modify the feedstock.

Since 2014, the Center has been pushing to increase the blending of ethanol and fuel. The government has actually advanced the 20% blending target to 2023. Given the price advantage of producing ethanol from cane juice or sugar juice, many factories have started to divert significant amounts of sugar production to produce the fuel additive. In 2020-2021, the country had seen the production of 302.2 crore per liter of ethanol and the blend percentage achieved was 8.1%.

This push for ethanol, Desai said, has seen many plants turn to both wasteland and green field plants. Since 2016, Desai’s company has commissioned 95 factories in the country. Balrampur Chini and Ugar Sugar Works are among the main consumers the company caters to. Demand, says Desai, is coming from both new consumers and existing consumers opting to expand. “Most of the customers come from the private mills while some from the cooperatives also send in enquiries,” Desai said.

Desai said the eMax technology has enabled them to capture 50% of the ethanol currently installed in the country. Along with the sugar industry, the company has also commissioned grain-based factories in states that use corn and broken rice for the production of the raw material to produce the fuel additive.

“Our technology has caught the attention of industry as it can use two different raw materials and also results in substantial energy savings,” he said. The last financial year had seen the company report revenue of Rs 750 crore and this financial year the company will cross the Rs 1,000 crore. Desai said they have planned 25 plants that they will commission over the next two years.