Tata Chemicals Ltd (TCL) has registered a lower net profit of Rs 30 crore during the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2004, as against Rs 60 crore in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal. Net sales have gone up from Rs 354 crore to Rs 554 crore during the quarter under review. The results are not comparable since the financial results for 2003-04 pertain to the merged entity and those in 2002-03 are relevant to TCL stand alone.
TCL managing director Prasad Menon said, “TCL’s operating and financial performance is a reflection of a continuing endeavor to strengthen topline through volume expansion and enhancement of product offerings while simultaneously improving margins on the back of efficient operations and prudent financial management. It is heartening to note that these results have been achieved in the face of a demanding external environment wherein prices of key commodity inputs such as coal, coke and ammonia as well as ocean freight rates touched record highs.” The merger with Hind Lever Chemicals has resulted in the dilution of TCL’s equity by approximately 19 per cent. Consequently, TCL’s paid up share capital stands at Rs 215.2 crore. During the financial year 2004, the company’s net sales amounted to Rs 2,544 crore as against Rs 1,535 crore of the stand-alone company in the corresponding period last year. The company’s net profit has gone up from Rs 197 crore to Rs 221 crore during the year under review. The board has also approved dividend of Rs 5.50 per equity share translating to a dividend payout ratio of 60.5 per cent. TCL has earmarked around Rs 250 crore for debottlenecking its urea plant at Babrala and setting up a new dense soda ash plant at Mithapur during the current fiscal. Mr Menon said: “Across businesses, TCL will continue to focus on enhancement of financial and operational efficiencies as well as increasing the production capacity.”