Cement major Ultratech Cement on April 29 reported a 47.6% rise in consolidated net profit at Rs 2,620 crore for the quarter ended March compared to Rs 1,775 crore registered in the year-ago period. The jump in profit was due to tax write back in the quarter versus tax paid a year ago.
Consolidated net sales rose marginally by 9.32% to Rs 15,557 crore as compared to Rs 14,232 crore a year ago. Tax written back in the quarter was at Rs 200 crore against tax paid of Rs 850 crore a year ago.
The quarter was subdued as consolidated sales volume (grey and white cement) fell 0.3% year-on-year to 27.69 million tonnes. Except in central and south, demand in other markets remained muted impacted by assembly elections, untimely rains, and cold weather.
Further, elevated input costs meant consolidated earnings before interest depreciation and tax declined 15.6% from a year ago to Rs 3,165 crore.
Last year, on a per tonne basis, Ultratech's logistics cost increased by 4% YoY, and energy cost rose by 48% with prices of pet coke and coal doubling during the period. Raw material costs were up 7% on account of the increase in the cost of fly ash, bauxite, gypsum, and HSD.
The company said its efforts towards prudent working capital management and control on cash flows, continued relentlessly. The firm said it achieved effective capacity utilisation of 90% during the quarter.
The company has managed to reduce its debt in FY22. On a consolidated basis, its net debt fell by 41% to Rs 3,751 crore versus Rs 6,353 crore last year with net debt to Ebitda improving to 0.32 times in the FY22 from 0.53 times a year ago.
During the year, the firm commenced with a 42-megawatt waste heat recovery power plant in line with its continuing endeavour towards enhancing environment conservation measures. With this, the firm's total WHRS capacity stands augmented to 167mw covering nearly 16% of its current power needs.
The firm said this is expected to increase to 280 MW by the end of FY23 after completing the ongoing expansions. Ultratech remains focused on accelerating the decarbonisation of its operations.
On the outlook, the firm said its capital and financial resources remain fully protected and its liquidity position is adequately covered. Most importantly, it continues to remain committed to all its business associates. Rural and urban demand is also expected to pick up going forward and all this augurs well for it, the company added.The company's board also recommended a dividend of Rs 38 per share for its shareholders.