A worker uses a cutting torch in New Delhi, India. (Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg)  

Q4 Results: SAIL Improves Profitability As Production Ramp-Up Yields Results

Steel Authority of India Ltd.’s profit rose for the second straight quarter on the back of record steel production and an exceptional gain .

The state-run steel producer reported a profit of Rs 816 crore in the March-ended quarter compared to a loss of Rs 771 crore last year, according to its stock exchange filing. That compares with Rs 524 crore estimated by analysts polled by Bloomberg. That bottom line was aided by a Rs 377 crore exceptional gain which included writebacks for royalty payments, salary revisions and staff benefits.

Revenue rose 34.4 percent over last year to Rs 17,038 crore, higher than the Bloomberg consensus estimate of Rs 16,206 crore.

The sustained effort of process integration, intensive marketing, ramping up production and stabilisation of new mills are yielding results and helped the company’s financials, SAIL said in a media statement. “The domestic market is showing very good growth signs, which is backed up strongly by the government's initiative to enhance domestic steel consumption. The on-going and upcoming large infrastructure projects offer large scope for steel consumption,” chairman PK Singh said in the statement.

The steelmaker recorded its best ever sales in volume in a year in the financial year 2017-18. Volume rose 7.4 percent over the previous fiscal to 14.08 million tonnes. Even during the quarter, crude steel production rose 6 percent to 4 million tonnes, its best quarterly sales on record. Concast production also increased 8 percent to a record 3.4 million tonne during the quarter.

It now expects a demand to improve thanks to the government’s infrastructure push.

SAIL’s array of new products will befit the demands of retail, rural as well as larger projects. The company is poised to march ahead in the growth path and is enabled to explore the positive demand sentiments.
PK Singh, Chairman, SAIL

Operational Performance

  • Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation stood at Rs 2,347 crore versus an Ebitda loss of Rs 265 crore.
  • Operating margin stood at 13.8 percent.

Shares of the steelmaker closed 1.43 percent higher ahead of the earnings announcement. The stock fell 23.8 percent between January and March, compared to a 3.2 percent decline in the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex Index.

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