The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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MRPL sale eats into Grasim net

Mumbai, April 29: Grasim Industries, the third-largest cement maker in the country, has posted a fourth-quarter net profit of Rs 49 lakh after exceptional items against a profit of Rs 79.23 crore in the year-ago period.

Consequent to the divestment of its stake in Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd, Grasim has taken an exceptional charge of Rs 209 crore. Grasim called it a “cash-positive transaction”.

The company’s net sales for the quarter rose to Rs 1,211 crore from Rs 1,111 crore.

Grasim’s board has recommended a 100 per cent dividend (at Rs 10 per share) for 2003-04, with a total payout of Rs 103.4 crore.

Grasim said on a quarter-to-quarter basis, the fourth quarter has been satisfactory. Net profit after current taxes, but before exceptional items, was at Rs 171 crore, a rise of 44 per cent as compared with the corresponding previous quarter.

The company's total income for the fiscal rose to Rs 4,742.13 crore, compared with Rs 4,501.26 crore in the previous year.

The company’s turnover is up 5 per cent at Rs 4,626 crore while gross profit has risen 30 per cent at Rs 973 crore. Net profit after total tax expenses but before exceptional items is up 40 per cent at Rs 542 crore, despite making a substantially higher provision for tax expenses.

Grasim said three major factors have contributed to its impressive performance. These are growth in volumes, improvement in operational efficiencies resulting from ongoing modernisation efforts, plant up-gradation and energy optimisation and lowering of financing cost through reduction and substitution of high cost coupled with effective working capital management.

Grasim has registered an impressive growth both in production and sales volumes. Production at 11.09 million tonnes and sales at 11.6 million tonnes has risen in comparison with the previous year.

Sponge iron recorded all-round improved performance during the year. Production and sales volumes recorded growth of 10 per cent and 9 per cent at 612879 MT and 612425 MT respectively.

Orchid net surges 210%

Chennai-based pharma major Orchid Chemicals and Fertilisers has reported a 210 per cent rise in net profit at Rs 19.54 crore in 2002-03 as compared with Rs 6.31 crore in the previous fiscal.

Turnover during the fiscal went up by 27 per cent to touch Rs 541.42 crore as compared with Rs 425.52 crore in the previous fiscal, a company release said.

In the fourth quarter of 2002-03, the company has posted a net profit of Rs 10.32 crore against a net loss of Rs 4.12 crore in the same quarter of the previous fiscal while turnover stood at Rs 194.96 crore compared with Rs 147.18 crore. The company's board has recommended a dividend of 40 per cent.

Managing director K. Raghavendra Rao said the performance reflected the company's ability to manage investment imperatives and market forces of the technology-intensive business effectively.

“We hope to further enhance this robust growth performance in the current fiscal,” he said.

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