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ITC Q4 net up 19.4%, new FMCG segment posts maiden profit
The Times of India - 18 May 2013

FMCG-to-tobacco-to-hotel major ITC has witnessed 19.4% jump in net profit in the fourth quarter of 2012-13. The non-tobacco FMCG business of this diversified conglomerate got the first taste of profit since its inception 10 years back by registering a profit of Rs 11.87 crore in Q4 of this fiscal from a loss of Rs 16.68 crore in the year-ago period. This along with tobacco and agri business fuelled the company’s profit after tax to Rs 1,927 crore from Rs 1,614 crore in the quarter ended March 31, 2012. The net profit for the fiscal was registered at Rs 7,418.39 crore a growth of 20.4%.

ITC’s non-tobacco FMCG business includes foods, personal care products, education and stationary products, lifestyle retailing and matches. ITC officials pointed out that foods business was making profit for the last few quarters. The non-FMCG segment as a whole has made a profit for the first time after consecutive losses. The agri business, too, registered a 13.7% jump in net profit in the fourth quarter. However, the hotel segment continued to be sluggish with a drop in profit to Rs 40.63 crore from Rs 82 crore.

“This performance is even more encouraging when viewed against the backdrop of the extremely challenging business context in which it was achieved, namely, the continued economic slowdown, steep increase in taxes/ duties on cigarettes, gestation costs relating to the new FMCG businesses and recent investments in the paperboards, paper & packaging and hotels businesses. ITC has declared a dividend Rs 5.25 per share for the fiscal,” says an ITC release.

The turnover of the company in the Q4 grew by 19.2% to Rs 8,180 crore on robust performance in the non-cigarette FMCG, agri and cigarettes segments. Agri business has posted a turnover of Rs 1,854 crore.