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Maruti posts higher net profit at Rs 146 cr

New Delhi, May 21: Maruti Udyog Ltd today reported a 40 per cent jump in net profit for 2002-03 at Rs 146 crore on the back of higher productivity and reduced expenditure.

Total revenues of the automaker, in which Suzuki Motor of Japan holds 54.46 per cent stake, edged up to Rs 9,426 crore from Rs 9,398.9 crore in the year-ago period.

For the second straight year, Maruti Udyog stepped on the gas to record strong profits, thereby exorcising the spooky memories of 2000-01 when it got clobbered by a Rs 200 crore loss — its first loss in its 20 years of existence.

The healthy bottomline means Maruti can confidently launch its initial public offer next month when the government plans to divest another 25 per cent or 3.6 million shares at Rs 115 a share. The government currently holds 45.54 per cent of the equity.

The firm said: “Maruti worked with component suppliers leading to a reduction in the cost of producing a component without changing its functional utility.” Localisation levels for components also went up and helped in reducing costs.

Analysts attributed the lower growth of revenues to the flat sales of vehicles. During the year, sales went up marginally by 2.8 per cent to 3,62,426 units.

IPO prospectus

The Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange have cleared the prospectus for Maruti’s public issue. The two exchanges gave their approvals earlier this week.

Suzuki chairman Osamu Suzuki would visit Mumbai during May-end to kick off roadshows for the IPO. The roadshows are likely to be held in New Delhi and Mumbai between May 29 and June 1.

Of the 3.6 million equity on offer, 60 per cent will be offered to mutual funds, financial institutions, venture capitalists, 15 per cent to companies and large investors and the remaining 25 per cent would be offered to the retail investors.

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