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Metal, mining and energy major Sesa Sterlite has posted a sharp 77% sequential drop in consolidated net profit for the quarter ended June 30 at R376 crore, due to a hefty exceptional charge on account of changed depreciation norms at its oil and gas subsidiary, Cairn India.
Sesa Sterlite’s June quarter earnings are not strictly comparable with the same period a year earlier as the amalgamation of the erstwhile Sesa Goa and Sterlite Industries was completed only in September 2013.
The company, a part of billionaire Anil Agarwal’s London-listed mining and energy conglomerate Vedenta Resources, reported a turnover of R17,056 crore for the April-June quarter, around 18% lower sequentially. The decline in revenues was mainly on account of lower production volumes in the company’s copper business, which saw a 23-day planned maintenance shutdown.
“The outlook for the natural resources sector and for our company is positive as the government is looking at formulating forward-looking policies,” Sesa Sterlite’s chairman Navin Agarwal said in a company statement.
Sesa Sterlite said in a statement that barring the exceptional item of R1,627 crore -– which was on account of Cairn India retrospectively changing the way it calculates depreciation in line with guidelines under the new Companies Act —- it had done well operationally during the June quarter, if numbers were compared with adjusted proforma numbers for the June 2013 quarter.
Barring the exceptional item, Sesa Sterlite posted a net profit of R1,341 crore, which was almost unchanged sequentially and double the net profit in the year-ago period. The year-on-year increase in Sesa Sterlite’s revenues, according to the adjusted numbers it provided, stood at 19%. This rise in turnover was on account of higher revenues from its copper business, which was temporarily closed in June quarter of FY14, and the oil and gas business of Cairn India, which benefited from higher average crude oil prices.
The company’s operating profit for the June quarter stood at R5,670 crore, almost unchanged over the year earlier and 15% lower sequentially. Operating profit margin, however, improved 200 bps y-o-y as well as sequentially to 47%. The lower operating profit was on account of lower volumes in the zinc and power businesses.
Sesa Sterlite’s net profit could have appeared worse but for its other income rising significantly at R1,139 crore, almost double of what it was a year earlier and 50% higher over