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From Rs 1 lakh to Rs 542 crore business empire, KP Group’s CMD Faruk Patel is an undisputed king in Gujarat’s renewable energy sector

Faruk Patel first toyed the idea of ‘one tower all company network’ to the cellular companies in Gujarat

December 30: His ‘true phoenix’ is his passion. If he is forced to put one aside, you can bet that a new one will emerge from the ashes. He is unconcerned about anything. Meet Faruk G Patel, 49, the chairman and managing director (CMD) of the KP group of companies—the largest company in Gujarat’s renewable energy sector–which he founded with a Rs 1 lakh investment 27-years-ago, and now owns 18 companies with a market cap of Rs 542 crore.

Faruk Patel, a role model for young businesspeople, believes that “hard effort is the golden key that unlocks the door to destiny.” Born into a middle-class Muslim family in Surat, Faruk Patel rose to the pinnacle of success, thanks to his dedication and resilience.

Two of his 18 companies—KPI Global Infrastructure Limited and KP Energy Limited—are listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). While KPI Global is into the solar energy sector, KP Energy is in the windmill power generation sector. Recently, KPI Global has migrated to the main board of BSE and the National Stock Exchange (NSE) board. The KP Group employs more than 2,500 people directly and indirectly through its 18 companies.

The journey so far

Gulam Patel, Faruk Patel’s father, hailing from Kothi village in Bharuch district, shifted to Surat after being hired as a conductor (ticket-checker) with the Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation (GSRTC) 45 years ago. Faruk Patel was two-years-old when his father moved to Surat. Faruk Patel grew up in a middle-class family and cleared his Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exam. He went on to pursue a Diploma in Textile Engineering. In 1994, Faruk Patel, who was full of passion, established KP Buildcon Private Limited—the first company under the roof of KP Group. Faruk’s company used to take up small construction contracts initially. It then moved on to installing the cell towers for the big cellular companies in Gujarat and 16 other states across the country for 13 years.

But, destiny had something else for Faruk Patel when he chose to venture into the solar energy sector after years of being in the cell tower installation business. Patel formed KPI Global Infrastructure Private Limited. Another business, KP Energy Limited, was founded in 2010 to enter the windmill energy market. Both of these companies are now listed on the BSE. Out of 18 firms in the KP Group, Faruk Patel owns four private limited companies and heads three limited corporations.

KPI Global Infrastructure Limited planned a ‘solar park’ on 220 acres of land at Sudi village in Bharuch district and used it to provide income to more than 1,200 families through plots. The KP Group signed three successive MoUs with the Gujarat Government in 2013, 2015, and 2017 for setting up 15 MegaWatts of solar plants in Gujarat and that the work was completed ahead of schedule. Till now, the company has been generating 59 MW of solar energy on 220 acres of land at Sudi village in Bharuch district. A 3.8 MW solar plant has been made operational, out of the total 10 MW planned at Bhimpura village, while a 15 MW plant is operating out of the 25 MW planned at Tancha village. The company’s 20 MW solar plant at Ranada village is nearing completion, while the 15MW plant at Ochhan village is completed. The 4MW plans at Vagra, Muler and Kurchan will be operationalised in a short time.

The company has operationalised 100MW solar plants on 600 acres of land in Gujarat, and that the target is to commission 1,000 MW solar plants by 2025. Notably, the KP Group received an award of ‘Best Solar Plant’ at Sudi village by the Gujarat Government.

On the other hand, KP Group’s KP Energy Limited has the order book for the installation and maintenance of windmills to generate 1 Gigawatt. It is a ‘balance of plan’ provider company to the windmill sector and also provides an end-to-end solution for setting up wind farms. To date, the company is handling 200 MW electricity generation in Gujarat. In 2019, the CLP India Private Limited gave KP Energy the contract to set up a 250.8 MW windmill power project in Dwarka. The company is working diligently on the 15 MW and 70 MW windmill projects in Mahuva. The company has carried out windmill installation and maintenance work in the hilly areas, interior areas, and coastal belts at Ratdi, Bardia, Matalpar, Odedra, Baradiya, etc.

KP Buildcon Private Limited is the flagship company of the KP Group. After establishing the company in 2001, it has made a significant contribution in the field of telecommunication in Gujarat. Thanks to KP Buildcon, the meticulous installation of cell towers across Gujarat has helped lakhs of mobile phone users get rid of the network coverage problems. The company has worked closely with the leading cellular companies such as Vodafone, Airtel, and Idea for the installation and erection of cell towers across Gujarat. Faruk Patel was the first to put forth the idea of ‘one tower all company network’ before the cellular companies, and that it was well-received. However, Patel assigned KP Buildcon the task of erecting mobile towers in 16 states across the country, winning accolades and awards of highest Ready For Installation (RFI) from the cellular companies. Impressed by the efforts and passion, Vodafone and Idea Limited (VI) handed over the maintenance work of the nine FRTs in 2,000 kilometres in Gujarat.

Under the auspices of KP Buildcon Private Limited, the business of Fixed Radio Terminal (FRT) and the Optical Fibre Cable (OFC) has been well established with the setting up of the entire fabrication centre at Dabhasa village in Vadodara’s Padra taluka. KP Buildcon is an ISO 9001:2015 certified company with an extensive and sophisticated fabrication facility in Vadodara. The factory is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery and has an annual galvanising capacity of 24,000 metric tons. The company started fabrication work with 150 tons per month, and that about 1,000 tons of fabrication is performed every month using hi-tech machinery.

The leader speaks

“Hard work, hard work, and only hard work will get you where you want to go,” says Faruk Patel, KP Group’s CMD. “I always worked hard to reach my specified goals, even though I was born into a middle-class family. Throughout my life’s ups and downs, I never stopped working hard and never gave up. Even if you want to relax, I feel you should keep walking. Success will undoubtedly follow you if you continue to trust and work hard. I believe that the only alternative to hard work is hard labour in the proper direction to attain the desired results.”

To commemorate his son’s marriage on August 10, 2021, Patel arranged a magnificent meal for 150 specially-abled youngsters and 90 senior people from the city’s two old-age homes. Following the Covid protocol and SoP, KP Group gave the best cuisine to the elderly and specially-abled children and treated them like dignitaries to make the day memorable.

Faruk Patel, his son Affan, his daughter-in-law Shaba Amin, and other family members and friends personally greeted the distinguished visitors at the Marriott Hotel and gave them a delectable meal. The guests sang songs, danced to Garba music, and showered the newlywed couple with their best wishes and blessings.