Mumbai, April 22 (IANS) India’s largest private company, Reliance Industries, on Friday said its consolidated profits for the quarter ended March 31 were 16.9 percent up at Rs.7,398 crore on improved margins, beating the market expectation of around Rs.7,000 crore.
The consolidated net profit for the year as a whole for the refining-to-retail conglomerate stood at Rs.27,630 crore, up 17.2 percent. In a regulatory filing, it also reported a seven-year high gross refining margin of $10.8 per barrel, against $8.6 per barrel in 2014-15.
The consolidated turnover for the year, however, was down — falling to Rs.269,091 crore, against Rs.388,494 crore in the previous year — a decrease of 23.8 percent. This was attributed to a sharp fall in feedstock and product prices during the year,
But total expenses fell sharply down to Rs.245,203 crore from Rs.349.618 crore.
This was coupled with a record thoroughput of 69.6 million tonnes in the refining business at a capacity utilisation of 112 percent during the year. The refining earnings before interest and tax was up as much as 49 percent at Rs.23,598 crore.
All this helped the company’s earnings per share, on a face value of Rs.10, to move up to Rs.93.8 to from Rs.80.1.
“Financial year 2015-16 has been a year of outstanding achievement for our downstream hydrocarbon businesses, notwithstanding persisting global economic uncertainty. Refining and petrochemicals delivered record operating and financial performances,” chairman Mukesh Ambani said in a statement.
“Our refineries sustained double-digit gross refining margins and record levels of utilization through the year. Our balanced petrochemical portfolio, across products and feedstocks, helped capture benefits of vastly improved naphtha cracking economics and favourable polymer markets.”
He was, however, silent on the specifics of the launch of Jio 4G services. “The commercial roll-out of our Jio services this year will digitally enable a billion Indians and propel growth for India and Reliance,” is all that he said.
In petrochemicals, the volumes growth was up 12 percent at 24.7 million tonnes, reflecting the start-up of purified terephthalic acid and polyethylene terephthalate capacities. The earnings before interest and tax for this business expanded by 380 basis points to 12.4 percent.
The retail business also saw the sales grow — up 22.5 percent at Rs.21,612 crore for the year. The number of stores across the country also expanded to 3,245 in 532 cities, an addition of 624 stores, the company said after a meeting of its board of directors.
Like it has done in the past, the results were announced well after the close of stock markets in India — where the company’s scrip fell Rs.2.15, or 0.21 percent, at Rs.1038.75 on the BSE and on the National Stock Exchange by Re.0.65 or 0.06 percent, to Rs.1,040.50.
In keeping with the Mukesh Ambani group’s major foray into digital services, the company also made provision for live streaming of results over some top global social media networks: YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Periscope, the last being a fresh platform for the company’s results.