Tata Tea Net Down 18% To Rs 17 Cr In Third Quarter

Mumbai, January 27: | Updated: Jan 28 2003, 05:30am hrs
Tata Tea Ltd has reported a 17.9 per cent decline in net profit to Rs 16.97 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, 2002, as compared to Rs 20.67 crore in the corresponding quarter of last year. Income from operations dropped by three per cent to Rs 191.41 crore from Rs 197.50 crore.

The decline was on account of continued slowdown in the organised retail market for branded teas and lower tea prices in auctions, the company said.

Earnings per share at Rs 3.02 per share, was lower as against Rs 3.68 per share. The profit before tax from operations at Rs 19.04 crore for the third quarter was higher than the profit for the corresponding period of the preceding year by five per cent. However, net profit for the quarter suffered a decline on account of lower income from sale of shares.

According to Tata Tea managing director Homi Khusrokhan: "Our results for the third quarter are encouraging, especially in the context of the Indian tea industry being severely hit by unusual weather conditions witnessed in North India. The company has maintained its market share at over 16 per cent and continued to invest strongly in the promotion of its various brands, including the new campaign for Tata Tea, the companys flagship brand."

Consumption of raw materials during the third quarter is higher due to increased purchase of tea and spices for exports and utilisation of a higher proportion of auction purchased teas. Other income at Rs 1.68 crore was higher as compared to Rs 1.16 crore last year, on account of increased expenditure on brand promotion.