Ambuja Cements (ACL) reported Q4CY18 numbers significantly below estimates on the operating fronts. Company reported revenue of Rs2,863.3cr (in-line with estimates) led by volume growth of 4.4% yoy. However, due to higher costs, the EBITDA declined by 25.3% yoy to Rs403.9cr, 20% lower than the estimate. EBITDA margin, thus, contracted by 581bps yoy to 14.1% against estimate of 17.8%. Reported PAT was up by 58.8% yoy to Rs537.4cr, which included tax write-back of Rs372cr pertaining to earlier years and exceptional items of Rs85cr (net of tax). Adjusting to the one-offs, the Adjusted PAT stood at Rs214.5cr, ~25% below estimates.
On standalone basis, ACL reported 4.4% yoy growth in volume to 6.13MT with utilisation improving 400bps yoy to 83%. Realization was up 1.1% yoy, but down 2.4% qoq.
Company indicated that the sale of premium products (Roof Special, Compocem and Cool Walls) portfolio improved, and reported 38% yoy growth.
On account of higher costs, operating costs/tonne was up 8.3% yoy, primarily led by 5.3% yoy increase in energy costs (higher pet coke and coal prices), 2.8% yoy increase in freight costs (higher diesel prices and clinker transportation), and increased packaging costs.
Thus, EBITDA/tonne was Rs659, down 28.5% yoy.
Higher other income (up 76.8% yoy) and lower tax rate restricted the decline in adjusted profit despite a steep fall in operating profit.
On consolidated basis, company reported net revenue growth of 9% yoy to Rs6,728.7cr with an EBITDA of Rs908cr (down 7.9% yoy). Reported consolidated PAT stood at 1,377.9cr, including tax write-back of Rs873cr pertaining to earlier years and exceptional items of Rs68cr (net of tax).
Ambuja Cements Ltd is currently trading at Rs. 199.85, up by 2 points or 1.01% from its previous closing of Rs. 197.85 on the BSE.
The scrip opened at Rs. 198.10 and has touched a high and low of Rs. 202.70 and Rs. 198.10 respectively. So far 11,82,724 (NSE+BSE) shares were traded on the counter. The stock is currently trading above its 200 DMA.
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