The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Bata limps along with heavier losses

Calcutta, April 18: Bata India has suffered a first-quarter loss of Rs 6.57 crore, a sharp increase of 55.68 per cent rise from Rs 4.22 crore in the corresponding period of the previous year.

However, sales rose marginally by 6.61 per cent to Rs 153.35 crore as compared with Rs 143.83 crore in the corresponding previous period.

The company’s expenditure increased to Rs 154.94 crore against Rs 146.33 crore in the first quarter of 2002.

Analysts feel that fierce competition from regional brands and frequent reshuffles in top-level management are the main reasons behind the loss. The company had registered a net loss of Rs 7.4 crore in 2002.

The company’s move to restructure the top-level management has not yielded results, corporate watchers feel. The decision to introduce new models every fortnight has not added to its bottomline.

Bata India, in a move to re-align its business with global trends, had restructured its top team. Last year the board decided to appoint C. Morzaria, the former managing director of the company, as executive vice-chairman and Stephen John Davies as the new managing director. Davies replaced Fernando Garcia who joined the parent company Bata Shoe Organisation.

The restructuring was done to meet the expectations of India consumers by providing quality service and a range of new products of international standards.

Davies and his new team will concentrate on introducing a wide range of international quality products at regular intervals and in all price segments.

The company has undertaken a four-pronged strategy for growth–improving market penetration, focus on stores configuration, distribution logistics and launch of new products.

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