The Telegraph
Tuesday , May 6 , 2014
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Khaitan son takes charge of Eveready

Amritanshu: New role

Calcutta, May 5: Eveready Industries today said its executive director Amritanshu Khaitan has taken over as the managing director of the company.

The board’s decision today fills a two-year old void created after the resignation of Deepak Khaitan, the erstwhile executive vice-chairman and MD of the company. Deepak had assumed charge in 1998.

Eveready is engaged in marketing dry cell and rechargeable batteries, flashlights and packet tea. It has close to 3,000 distributors.

Deepak Khaitan, the eldest son of industrialist B.M. Khaitan, will continue on the Eveready board as the non-executive vice-chairman. He is also the executive chairman of McNally Bharat Engineering Co. Ltd since 2011. Amritanshu is Deepak’s son.

Deepak’s brother Aditya is the managing director of B.M. Khaitan group tea company McLeod Russel.

“The main job will be to drive the topline and bottomline of Eveready and bring a better balance sheet. The idea will be to leverage the Eveready brand and its distribution. The board felt it was the right time to elevate the position,” Amritanshu Khaitan said today after the announcement.

Eveready today posted a standalone net profit of Rs 1.25 crore for the three months ended March 31 against a net loss of Rs 2.15 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous financial year.

Total income rose 13.01 per cent to Rs 257.43 crore from Rs 227.79 crore in the same period of the previous year. Expenses rose to Rs 252.19 crore from Rs 228.18 crore.

For the year ended March 31, 2014, standalone net profit rose 167.7 per cent to Rs 13.60 crore from Rs 5.08 crore the year before. Net income from operations was at Rs 1,153.40 crore against Rs 1,035.32 crore.

On a consolidated basis, Eveready saw its net profit rise to Rs 13.59 crore for the fiscal from Rs 5.07 crore in the previous year.

Eveready said given the operational improvement and tight working capital management, it was able to reduce its borrowings by Rs 50 crore during the financial year.

At the end of the year, borrowings stood at Rs 225 crore. Eveready said it continued to aggressively push its plans to reduce debts substantially in the coming year.

The Eveready board has recommended a dividend of Re 0.50 per fully paid up equity share of Rs 5 each for the year ended March 31, 2014.

Price pressure

During the year, the depreciation of the rupee had raised input costs. The company increased prices of batteries and flashlights twice to counter the rise in costs.

“The market has absorbed these price increases and outlook for batteries and flashlights appears stable. Another round of price increase has already been implemented with effect from April. Eveready is also basing its growth for the year on new products, especially the various lighting products and devices,” the company said in a statement.