UltraTech second quarter profit surges, India

UltraTech second quarter profit surges, India
Published: 22 October 2012


India’s largest cement producer UltraTech reported a 97 per cent rise in standalone profit to INR5.5bn (US$102m) for the second quarter of the current fiscal FY12-13 but higher input costs continue to impede the domestic industry.

During the July-September 2012 period, net sales rose 20 per cent to INR47bn, as consumption has seen a gradual uptick through the year.

Cost cutting measures have helped the cement major achieve better results, the company said in a release. Margins of cement makers have come under pressure in recent months due to an increase in the cost of fuel and transport. Ultratech's variable costs rose eight per cent in the quarter from a year previously, the company said on Saturday. In September, the government hiked diesel prices by 14 per cent and that will have a further impact on cement producers.

The company, part of the diversified Aditya Birla Group, said its additional capacity of 10.2Mta at plants in Chhattisgarh and Karnataka would be operational in the early part of the fiscal year that begins in April 2013.

Demand for cement in India, the world's secondlargest producer after China, is expected to increase about eight per cent during the fiscal year as the government focuses on measures to expedite infrastructure projects to revive growth.