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IBP Co.

Limited got merged with its parent company 'Indian Oil Corporation Limited' on 02-05-2007 under the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Government of India. The merger ends the history of 98 year old 'IBP Co Limited', the oldest oil company in India. IBP Co. Limited was born in the then undivided British India as Indo-Burma Petroleum Company Limited a joint stock private company on 08-02-1909 at Burma, presently Myanmar. The developments that followed second world war forced the company change its head quarters to Kolkata permitting the British Government to bombard and destroy its only refinery at Rangoon. Thereafter the company joined hands with the then Indian Oil Company (Later formed as Indian Oil Corporation Limited after merger with Indian Refineries Company Limited) and carried out business in petroleum products at Mumbai and Kolkata. Though it was initially taken over by IOC in 1970, it got separated and formed as a public sector company in 1974 under the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India. By this time all the foreign private oil businesses were nationalized and made public sector companies. The Indo Burma Petroleum Company Limited changed its name to IBP Co. Limited in 1983. During 2002, it was once again acquired by the IOC and became one if its group companies. Though predominantly an oil company, IBP diversified its activities into engineering and chemicals. The venture into explosives by the chemical division was, based on a suggestion from the Govt of India when the country faced acute shortage of explosives for mining industry following an accident and strikes at the only major supplier viz IEL in India in 60s. As the country had to import huge quantities of explosives to meet consumption needs for over six months, severe difficulties were faced in storage, handling and transportation to mining areas. Finally, the Chary committee set up for the purpose strongly recommended a company to be set up in public sector for manufacture of explosives. IBP, waiting for a diversification into chemicals, readily grabbed the opportunity and commenced its business in manufacture and marketing of industrial explosives. The IBPs first packaged slurry explosive manufacturing plant was set up in Korba (then in MP now in Chattisgarh) in the year 1976 under the collaboration from Ireco Inc. USA. The unit commenced its commercial production in August 1977. Thereafter the chemical division has diversified its business into a unique technology the bulk delivered slurry explosives with the first ever plant of its kind set up in India at Kudremukh with a capacity of 5000 Tons per annum in 1980. The first ever supply of site-mixed bulk slurry explosives took place on 20-12-1980 in a blast using 63 tons of this product. Over the past 25 years, by 20th Dec 2005 it has completed supply of 64,695 MT of SMS explosives to Kudremukh Iron Ore Project. For IBP, the journey in bulk explosives commenced at Kudremukh continued a long way with new plants set up in both coal and metal mining sectors. The second plant came up at Singrauli (MP) in the year 1983 followed by Block-II Dhanbad (Jharkhand), Ramagundam (AP), Rampur Agucha (Rajasthan), Kusmunda (Chattisgarh) etc. As on date there are ten plants set up in India reaching a peak production volume of 80,000 MT of bulk explosives. In view of highly uneconomical operations, the Industrial Explosives Plant at Korba manufacturing packaged explosives was closed in the year 2008. During the year 2008, the BG-Explosives, IBP Division of IOCL entered into a five year long term agreement with Coal India Limited (CIL, the largest producer of coal in the world) for supply of bulk

explosives. On successful completion of first five year contract, process is initiated for entering in to another long term contract of five years which can be renewed further for an equal period.

Competitors[edit]
Over the years, the number of competitors in India grew from only two in the beginning to more than forty today, adversely affecting the market share in Industrial explosives of IBP from a high of around 30% down to 18%. The current installed capacity of IBP Division,IOCL is around 2.0 Lac tons. Presently, IOCL is the only central public sector company servicing the market for industrial explosives. The business group experienced very high profits in the beginning when there were only two competitors (IEL and IDL) and progressively incurred losses from the late nineties.

New technologies[edit]
The advent of modern technologies in manufacture of explosives including emulsions led IBP to radically change the original technology from Ireco Inc. and introduce new and cost effective technologies in both slurry and emulsion products. However, the original Irecos slurry technology obtained in 80s was modified through in house marketing and R&D efforts and made superior to that of emulsion technology. Keeping in view the demands for better rock breakage in very hard rock formations, currently the technology of bulk Slurry explosives is being used only at Bolani(SAIL) & Malanjkhand(HCL). The site mixed bulk delivered explosives, as the name suggests are manufactured on site in a specially designed truck (called pumptruck) by carrying non-explosive ingredients in separate chambers, mixing them in desired proportions and pumping them in liquid form directly into bore holes. The poured mixture acquires the characteristics of an explosive within few minutes of pumping. Unlike bulk emulsions, the SMS can be pumped in various densities ranging from 0.6 g/cm to as high as 1.20 g/cm and the energy can be varied to produce twenty different types of chemically balanced explosive products to exactly the suit the rock conditions and achieve techno-economic advantages for the customers. The site mixed bulk explosive system (emulsion or slurry) eliminated the need for packaging, inventory, storage and handling of various types of explosives and thus lowered direct costs to customers..

Expansion[edit]
The expansion phase of IBP Division of IOCL in the field of explosives still continues with possibilities to set up bulk emulsion plants at various mining locations across the country.

Cryogenics Division[edit]
When "Operation Flood" (a program to produce more milk in the country) was introduced in India, new technology from the Western world was adopted. One new implementation was storing bull's semen in

liquid nitrogen containers. The temperature of liquid nitrogen is minus 196 degrees Celsius. The liquid nitrogen containers are similar to thermos flasks used for storing hot water, but have advanced insulation technology to keep the liquid nitrogen cool at minus 196 degrees Celsius. For a long long time, IBP was the only company manufacturing this technology item in India. Only recently has a private player entered the market. Still, IBP is the market leader as of today (2008).