Dalmia Bharat, the second largest cement manufacturer in eastern India, is planning to strengthen its presence in the region to tap growth potential. The company is keeping its options open for enhancing production capacity with an aim to meet demand growth in eastern India, driven by housing and rejuvenated infrastructure development. “We would be growing. We have a vision… We would be expanding our activities and capabilities in the east,” Dalmia cement Bharat CEO & whole time director Mahendra Singhi told PTI. “We have an installed capacity of 25 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) and is the fourth largest company. We have a plan to grow in the east,” he added.
In the eastern region, the company had around 14 per cent market share in FY 2016-17. Singhi did not share the quantum of investment earmarked by the company to strengthen its eastern region operations. On being asked that whether the expansion in the eastern market will be organic or through acquisition he said: “Right now we are targeting organic growth only but would go if there is possibility to expand with brown field project”. In the eastern region, Dalmia Bharat has a capacity of 12.9 MTPA and is second in the region after Holcim, which has 14.8 MTPA capacity.
While in south, the company has a capacity of 12.1 MTPA and stands fifth in terms of production capacity. Its total gross revenues was at Rs 8,348 crore in FY 2016-17, up 15 per cent as against Rs 7,262 crore of FY 2015- 16. It expects an increase in cement demand in coming years led by the government spending on big infra projects, rural demand and low cost housing. “The government is spending money to build road, ports and projects as Sagarmala, Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor, freight corridor, housing for all… we are quite hopeful that there would be revival of demand,” Singhi said.
Dalmia Bharat Ltd along with its subsidiaries has 11 plants in 8 states with around 11.2 per cent market share in FY 2016-17. Over GST, Singhi said it has helped the cement makers in inter state movement as the timing has come down by 20 per cent and that will bring down the logistic cost of the industry. However, he also added: “Cement is still taxed at 28 per cent, like a luxury product in the GST. It was burdened with tax and has been halved with 1 to 1.5 per cent only. The gain is only on some input tax credit, which is minimal”. It has brands as – Dalmia DSP, Dalmia, Dalmia Ultra, Vajram, Dalmia Superroof, Konark, and Dalmia SRPC — under its portfolio.