â€œAs mentioned during our call, these are speculations and as a company we would not like to respond to the speculations,â€ Dalmia Bharat said in an email to a Moneycontrol query on the matter.
Dalmia Bharat and Shree Cement are among at least three companies that have expressed interest in buying Binani Industries’ subsidiary Binani Cement's 6.25 million tonne per annum cement manufacturing capacity in India.
The company’s India cement plants are located at two districts of Rajasthan – Sikar and Sirohi.
“Dalmia Bharat and Shree Cement are interested. There’s one MNC as well that has a large presence in India which is interested in buying,” an official familiar with the development said.
Binani has cement manufacturing operations in Dubai and China as well and according to its website, also sells building material in Tanzania, the UK, Sudan, Namibia and South Africa.
“As mentioned during our call, these is speculation and as a company we would not like to respond to speculations,” Dalmia Bharat said in an email to a Moneycontrol query on the matter.
The other two companies -- Binani Industries and Shree Cement -- didn't respond to mails sent to them.
Binani Cement ended 2015-16 (April-March) with a net loss of Rs 288.9 crore. This followed the 2014-15 net loss of Rs 104.88 crore. It had a net cash ouflow of Rs 62.11 crore in 2015-16. The Braj Binani group company had loans of Rs 3,072.83 crore at the end of March 2016. Sale of cement operations could mitigate Binani Industries’ troubles in servicing its loans.
"Going by the replacement cost for setting up a million-tonne capacity, a deal for 6 million tonnes should happen between Rs 4000 crore and Rs 5000 crore, assuming all raw materials and linkages are in place," an analyst with a domestic brokerage said.
UltraTech Cement, the largest cement manufacturer in India, recently announced its plans to set up a 3.5 million tonne integrated plant in Madhya Pradesh. The company pegged the cost of setting up the plant at around USD 110 for every tonne of cement. At that rate, the deal size for Binani should be around Rs 4500 crore.
According to the independent auditor’s observations in Binani Industries’ 2015-16 annual report, the parent company’s consolidated current liabilities exceeded its consolidated current assets by Rs 1,360.1 crore while consolidated liabilities exceeded its total consolidated assets by Rs 1,353.3 crore.
“These factors raise doubts about the group’s ability to continue as a going concern in the foreseeable future,” the auditor said in the report.
Binani Cement also has cases related to sales tax and unfair trade pending in courts.
Consolidation in the around 300-million tonne-a-year Indian cement market, where supply exceeds demand, is inevitable.
Dalmia Bharat has an annual cement manufacturing capacity of 25 million tonnes while Shree Cement boasts of a 25.6 million-tonne capacity.
Both Dalmia Bharat and Shree Cement have used the inorganic route in the past to grow their capacities – Dalmia buying OCL India and Shree buying a grinding unit of Jaiprakash Associates.