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IT services sector may register growth upto 9% in FY20: Icra report

The growth will be at par with the 9.1 percent growth achieved by the sector in FY19, according to industry lobby Nasscom

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

IT, BPO, outsourcing

The information technology services sector is estimated to clock a flat growth of upto 9 percent in the fiscal year 2019-20, a report said Monday.

The growth will be at par with the 9.1 percent growth achieved by the sector in FY19, according to lobby

The grouping has discontinued a 25-year-old practice of coming out with growth estimates citing the changes in the landscape which makes the job harder.

Domestic rating agency said the sector will clock a 7-9 percent growth in USD in FY20 mainly on demand for solutions.

"The earlier small-scale proof of concept projects has started evolving into enterprise level larger implementations coupled with improvement in discretionary spend supporting future growth," its vice president said.

The traditional mainstay of banking and financial services will experience some weakness on low interest rates, focus on cost optimisation and managing discretionary spending, it said, adding that insurance are supporting the growth.

Firming oil prices will lead to some discretionary spends by energy firms on spends and give the IT firms some good news, while retail is also showing improvement in the first nine months of FY19.

From a profitability perspective, the rating agency said margins were flattish in the third quarter of FY19 on pricing pressure, increased regulatory costs, wage inflation and higher onshore hiring and sub-contracting cost necessitated by visa curbs.

However, the overall margins are estimated to decline to 20.8 percent in FY20 for its 19 sample from 22.5 percent in FY18.

Indian have started to ramp-up on-shore hiring in its largest market of US on visa issuance norms being tightened by restricting the entry-level programmers coupled with increasing compliance and evidence requirements adding to cost pressures, it said.

There will be higher consolidation in the industry, especially among the small and mid-size players, owing to margin pressures in the next decade, it said.

From a credit outlook perspective, the rating agency said it expects some stability on the ability of the sector to sustain free cash flows.

First Published: Mon, March 18 2019. 16:10 IST