Rajiv Agarwal, CEO and MD, Essar Ports says, in an interview to CNBC-TV18, that quarterly profit was up due to the boost in cargo volumes and increased cost control.
The growth in cargo volumes and overall cost control helped boost profitability, says Rajiv Agarwal, CEO and MD, Essar Ports told CNBC-TV18 after the announcement of results on Thursday.
Agarwal added that the company was able to maintain the level of debt and is currently building port facilities at Salaya and expanding the facility at Hazira.
Below is the edited transcript of the interview on CNBC-TV18
Q: You posted a bottom line of Rs 100 crore. What led to growth in profitability this quarter?
A: The cargo business posted an 11-percent growth while the topline grew by about 22 percent. This resulted in the EBITDA rising by 22 percent and pushed bottomline up from Rs 68 crore to Rs 101.4 crore. The growth in profitability was due to growth in volumes and the overall cost control. We are eager for a strong year ahead.
Q: What was your exact volume of cargo in this particular quarter? Going ahead, what do you expect in FY14?
A: The volume of cargo that we handled this quarter is about 14.08 million tonne and for the full year, we expect a cargo volume of about 62 million tonne.
The cargo volume handled at Hazira is around 3.5 million tonne, 5.5 million tonne is handled at Paradip and the balance is handled at Vadinar.
Q: What is your debt situation, what does it stand at and what would your plan be in terms of possible debt reduction going forward?
A: Our debt level stands at around Rs 5,900 crore. Though the level of debt has reduced in the process of regular repayment, we have incurred fresh debt for the new projects. However, we have been able to maintain the level of debt in spite of new capex for new projects.
We are building port facilities at Salaya and expanding our facility at Hazira. We have recently got a new concession in Vizag to modernise the exiting outer and inner harbour. The current capacity is at 23 million tonne and this will go up to 27 million tonne after modernisation.