Chennai Petroleum Corporation Limited (CPCL), formerly known as Madras Refineries Limited (MRL) was formed as a joint venture in 1965 between the Government of India (GOI), AMOCO and National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) having a share holding in the ratio 74%: 13%: 13% respectively. Originally ,CPCL Refinery was set up with an installed capacity of 2.5 Million Tonnes Per Annum (MMTPA) in a record time of 27 months at a cost of Rs. 43 crore without any time or cost over run. In 1985, AMOCO disinvested in favour of GOI and the shareholding percentage of GOI and NIOC stood revised at 84.62% and 15.38% respectively. Later GOI disinvested 16.92% of the paid up capital in favor of Unit Trust of India, Mutual Funds, Insurance Companies and Banks on 19 th May 1992, thereby reducing its holding to 67.7 %. The public issue of CPCL shares at a premium of Rs. 70 (Rs. 90 to FIIs) in 1994 was over subscribed to an extent of 38 times and added a large shareholder base.
As a part of the restructuring steps taken up by the Government of India, IndianOil acquired equity from GOI in 2000-01. In July 2003, NIOC transferred their entire shareholding to Naftiran Intertrade Company Limited, an affiliate, in line with the Formation Agreement, as part of their organizational restructuring. Currently IOC holds 51.89% while NICO holds 15.40%.
CPCL has two refineries with a combined refining capacity of 11.5 Million Tonnes Per Annum (MMTPA). The Manali Refinery has a capacity of 10.5 MMTPA and is one of the most complex refineries in India with Fuel, Lube, Wax and Petrochemical feedstocks production facilities. CPCL's second refinery is located at Cauvery Basin at Nagapattinam. This unit was set up in Nagapattinam with a capacity of 0.5 MMTPA in 1993 and later enhanced to 1.0 MMTPA.
The main products of the company are LPG, Motor Spirit, Superior Kerosene, Aviation Turbine Fuel, High Speed Diesel, Naphtha, Bitumen, Lube Base Stocks, Paraffin Wax, Fuel Oil, Hexane and Petrochemical feed stocks. The Wax Plant at CPCL has an installed capacity of 30,000 tonnes per annum, which is designed to produce paraffin wax for manufacture of candle wax, waterproof formulations and match wax. A Propylene Plant with a capacity of 17,000 tonnes per annum was commissioned in 1988 to supply petrochemical feedstock to neighbouring downstream industries. The unit was revamped to enhance the propylene production capacity to 30,000 tonnes per annum in 2004. CPCL also supplies LABFS to a downstream unit for manufacture of Liner Alkyl Benzene.