Black coal, white coal

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It was launched in to conduct e-sales on behalf of Coal India CIL and its subsidiaries, which together form the largest coal-mining conglomerate in the world. In India, coal has been a regulated commodity sold at government-notified prices since Every year, CIL and Singareni Coal Company mine approximately million tonnes of coal, which is sold at the government-notified price on a quota basis.

Online coal trading in india much as 80 per cent of this coal is consumed by power utilities, while the balance 20 per cent was bought by large traders and middlemen at the same subsidised price. These middlemen and traders would then sell the coal in the open market at premiums ranging from 50 to per cent.

By directly selling coal online, India's public sector coal companies have been able to garner the income which was earlier making its way into the pockets of middlemen. Considering that coal accounts for nearly 70 per cent of India's power requirements and is also a critical input for steel manufacturing, improvements in the coal sector have a national impact as it boosts public sector funds available for future investments in mines and coal handling equipment.

Viresh Oberoi, managing director, mjunction services, states candidly, "coaljunction is something that we are very online coal trading in india of. The efficiency of the model ensures that even a small buyer can buy coal from the largest miner in the world in a convenient and transparent manner, thereby destroying the stranglehold of the coal mafia. And in some way we have been able to contribute to the securitisation of India's energy resources.

Colliery to customer Online coal trading in india mjunction has created for e-sales of coal is a unique e-selling system. Mr Oberoi explains, "When we explored the business model, we realised that selling coal was very different from selling steel products.

The portal informs buyers that a particular colliery will be opening a new seam and putting out, say,tonnes of coal of a particular grade. Interested buyers put in bids for the quantity that they require, which can be as low as 50 tonnes.

When the auction starts, there are as many as 2, bids coming in concurrently. The entire system is automated and bidders are allotted quantities depending upon the price and quantity stated in the bids. Fortuitous flight The story of how mjunction got into the coal business is an interesting story by itself and practically a case of serendipity. Back inmjunction started looking for new business streams to add to its e-commerce platform and was considering options such as wood and aluminium.

While this discussion was on, Mr Oberoi, on a flight from Delhi to Kolkata, found himself seated next to Partha Bhattacharya, head of the public sector company, Bharat Coking Coal.

The two-hour flight ended on a path-breaking note when mjunction agreed to explore whether an e-commerce platform was feasible for selling coal. According to Mr Oberoi, the events that transpired were unexpected and unprecedented. Instead, the phone rang the very next day and it was Mr Parakh, calling from Delhi! Transparent transactions What Mr Parakh, Mr Bhattacharya and Shashi Kumar, the then chairman of Coal India wanted from mjunction was an open, fair and transparent method of selling coal that would be accessible even to small buyers.

The Delhi meeting ended with mjunction getting approval to sell coal online, along with the public sector company, MSTC. Inmjunction added coaljunction to its portfolio, but it took another couple of years for the online auction model to take off.

Along the way, our team was abused, threatened and even, on one memorable occasion, thrown down a flight of stairs. I used to get threatening calls at home," says Mr Oberoi. Today, coaljunction transacts coal sales of over 25 million tonnes annually more than 95 million tonnes since inceptionwith over 10, buyers across the country participating in the e-auctions. It has added a significant percentage of profits to the balance sheets of Coal India and its subsidiaries, and has triggered off a raging national debate on whether another 10 per cent of India's coal should be brought under the e-auction hammer.

A history of innovation The success of coaljunction highlights the unique business mindset of mjunction services. One of the youngest of the Tata companies set up in and just 10 years oldmjunction has a history of taking on overwhelming odds. With the original business model calling for Rs million in share capital and revenues based on eyeballs, content and advertising, mjunction found itself floundering even before it was properly established.

Investing partner Kalyani Steel backed out of the deal as the era of the online coal trading in india bust had set in, showing a starkly different economic reality. The fledgling six-employee company called metaljunction at online coal trading in india time found itself having to manage with a severely reduced share capital of Rs80 million, and no transaction commitments from its backers.

In response, mjunction threw out the old business plan, came up with the concept of an e-commerce platform for online coal trading in india and put online coal trading in india tremendous efforts to persuade steel companies to introduce online marketing.

This is something online coal trading in india the team is very proud of! The world's biggest e-marketplace for steel, the company has come a long way from that first bleak year. Currently valued at Rs8 billion, mjunction transacted business worth more than Rs billion in through its portals and has more than employees at 15 offices across India. Future vision Although hard work and persistence has played a major role in mjunction's success and viability, there is another factor that is just as significant — the ability to look to the future and lead the charge on new business fronts.

In the ten years since its inception, mjunction has launched several new e-platforms, namely metaljunction, buyjunction, coaljunction, autojunction, straightline, financejunction and valuejunction. With buyjunction launched inthe company entered the procurement space, offering e-sourcing solutions to customers.

In fact, this portal, coaljunction and the original steel platform metaljunction, together account for nearly 90 per cent of mjunction's business. Starting out as a B2B service provider, mjunction has also expanded into the B2C and C2C segments with autojunction a portal for buying and selling new and second-hand cars, auto accessories, etc and straightline a shopping portal for consumer products.

With greater penetration of laptops, 3G cell phones, mobile apps, bandwidth, etc, this sector is going to take off in the next few years, and we want online coal trading in india be in this space," says Mr Oberoi. In typical Tata fashion, the company has taken its corporate social responsibility just as seriously.

The company opens its offices and computers after office hours from 6pm to 9am to offer computer training and spoken English classes to the underprivileged. The classes are conducted by mjunction employees in their spare time, and the programme operates under a trust set up by the company called ejunction.

Over 1, youth have been trained since inception, with as many as being trained last year alone; some of them have subsequently joined mjunction. This year again an equal number will benefit from the initiative.

Marked by a strong spirit of entrepreneurship and a knack for choosing the right technological platforms, mjunction has shown itself online coal trading in india be a company grounded in innovation and futuristic in its vision.

July Gayatri Kamath Black coal, white online coal trading in india The success of mjunction services' online trading portal for coal has contributed to the securitisation of India's energy resources by curbing the black market in this precious mineral When the company metaljunction. Today it is in the news for successfully applying an e-sales model for another commodity — coal.

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