March quarter results: Shipping one of the worst-performing sectors
Pratibha Kamath  and  N Madhavan 06 June 2011

India’s exports and imports are booming but Indian shipping companies are hardly doing very well. Shipping was the worst-performing of the 29 sectors Moneylife tracks in sales, operating profit and net profit

Out of the 29 major sectors (out of 49) which are tracked by Moneylife in its database of 1,300 companies, the shipping sector had aggregate quarterly sales of Rs3,003.41 crore (down 8%); operating profit of Rs545.4 crore (down 25%) and net profit of Rs49.02 crore (down 87%) in the March quarter.

This is indeed surprising, considering the fact that India's exports jumped 34.42% in April 2011 to $23.80 billion continuing the robust growth from the previous fiscal. Imports also went up at around 13% to $32.80 billion.

In fact, shipping was the only sector among the 29 major sectors which recorded a negative sales growth for the March 2011 quarter over the previous year-ago quarter.

Government behemoth Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) was the best performer with a quarterly revenue figure of Rs865.13 crore (down 3%) and the lowest sales was reported by Chowgule Steamships with a quarterly revenue of Rs9.08 crore (up 60%).

On the revenue front, Bharati Shipyard was up 25% at Rs441.34 crore.

The aggregate quarterly operating profit of the shipping sector in March 2011 was Rs545.40 crore (down 25%) and aggregate quarterly net profit was Rs49.02 crore (down 87%). Bharati Shipyard managed to clock a decent operating profit growth figure. Its operating profit for the March 2011 quarter grew to Rs156.57 crore (up 90%) and the profit was Rs38.23 crore (up 7%). SCI reported an operating profit of Rs100.63 crore (down 33%) and a net loss of Rs6.17 crore (down 105%).

The second-lowest performer in sales growth of all the major sectors tracked by Moneylife was real estatewith quarterly revenue of Rs4,658.66 crore (up 4%). The sector's operating profit was Rs1,461.17 crore (up 2%) and its quarterly net profit was Rs1,371.84 crore (up 7%). One decent performer in terms of sales and operating profit growth for March 2011 was Anant Raj Industries, whose sales rose to Rs61.77 crore (up 75%) and operating profit rose to Rs43.80 crore (up 62%). Similarly, Mahindra Lifespace Developers was also an all-round good performer on all three aspects. Its sales rose to Rs163.83 crore (up 62%); operating profit rose to Rs40.36 crore (up 36%) and its net profit went up to Rs30.49 crore (up 29%).

The third-lowest sales growth was registered by the saturated telecom services sector with aggregate revenues of Rs15,020.43 crore (up 4%). The falling average revenue per user (ARPU) and stiff competition is pulling down this sector, on the sales front. Bharti Airtel and Tata Communications were the only companies (out of the five companies in the sector who have give out March 2011 quarter results) reporting positive sales growth. Bharati Airtel's revenue was Rs9,828.50 crore (up 10%), Tata Communications' sales rose to Rs863.60 crore (up 2%).

The second-lowest performer in operating profit growth was the oil & gas sector, with aggregate quarterly operating profit of Rs10,504.24 crore (down 10%). Its quarterly aggregate sales were Rs27,827.37 crore (up 12%) and quarterly net profits were Rs4,299.22 crore (down 17%). The best growth in operating profit was achieved by Indraprastha Gaswhose operating profit rose to Rs137.18 crore (up 45%) with net profit of Rs69.16 crore (up 34%). It was followed by Oil India whose operating profit rose to Rs937.18 crore (up 31%) and net profit was Rs562.61 crore (up 31%). Its quarterly sales were Rs1,488.40 crore (up 13%).

The hospitality sector, the third lowest in terms of operating profit, reported a figure of Rs437.65 crore (down 6%). Leelaventure managed overall good performancesales grew to Rs172.13 crore (up 18%), operating profit rose to Rs43.64 crore (up 28%) and net profit rose to Rs11.31 crore (up 21%).

The second-lowest performer in net profit growth of the major sectors was the pharma sector with an aggregate quarterly net profit of Rs2,137.10 crore (down 36%), while its operating profit was Rs3,009.79 crore (down 4%), and its quarterly sales were Rs18,066.65 crore (up 7%). Out of the 75 pharma companies we track, 72 companies have come out with their results.

Out of these, 36 companies have reported positive net profit growth and 36 were in the negative. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals was one of the 36 positive performers in net profit (Rs 65.89 crore, up 133%). Lupin and Sun Pharmaceutical were also high performers with net profit figures of Rs243.75 crore (up 64%) and Rs372.78 crore (up 46%).

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