Ambuja Cement shares rallied as much as 2 per cent on Friday despite reporting 4.4 per cent decline in net profit at Rs 304 crore for the quarter ended March 31, compared with Rs 318 crore in the same period last year. Stocks cheered the uptick in cement volumes that rose 9.5 per cent at 5.86 million tonnes compared with 5.35 MT in the corresponding quarter of the previous year.
At 11.53 am, shares of the company were trading 0.45 per cent up at Rs 221.25. The scrip opened at Rs 222.25 and has touched a high and low of Rs 224.40 and Rs 221.00, respectively, in trade so far. Later, the share price of the company closed 0.30 per cent up at Rs 220.90
The company said the cement demand registered double-digit growth during the current quarter. Considering favourable announcements in the Budget and other initiative by government for infrastructure, housing, smart cities and concrete roads, the medium and long term outlook for cement demand remains positive. The company will continue to focus on improving operational efficiencies, it said in a BSE filing.
The company’s net sales declined marginally by 0.3 per cent to Rs 2,418 crore in Q4 FY16 as against Rs 2,425 crore in the corresponding quarter last year, a company statement said.
During the quarter, energy cost was lower by 19 per cent due to fuel prices and increased usage of pet coke and alternate fuel. Pet coke consumption in kiln for the quarter increased from 40 to 60 per cent against the corresponding quarter of the previous year.
The distribution cost was marginally lower this quarter due to cost optimisation initiatives undertaken by the company as well as low packing cost, despite increased railway freight, it said.
In spite of lower production and distribution cost, operating EBITDA was down by 11.8 per cent, mainly due to lower prices, additional provision towards contribution to District Mineral Foundation and increased promotion expenses.