Jindal Stainless Ltd (JSL) on Tuesday reported a 15.85 per cent increase in consolidated net profit at Rs 51.81 crore for the quarter ended December, mainly on account of reduced material and finance cost.
The country's largest stainless steel maker had clocked a net profit of Rs 44.72 crore during the same quarter a year ago.
During October-December 2019, the company's total income stood at Rs 3,311 crore as compared with Rs 3,315 crore in the year-ago quarter, JSL said in a BSE filing.
Finance cost fell to Rs 144 crore from Rs 151 crore in the year-ago period, while cost of material consumed was also lower at Rs 2,025 crore as compared with Rs 2,120 crore.
"Sales volume rose by 17 per cent from 2,04,083 tonnes in the corresponding period last year to 2,39,283 tonnes in Q3 FY20. However, margins remained under pressure due to imports," the company said in a statement.
During the quarter, JSL also received consent-to-operate at an annual melt capacity of 1.1 million tonnes. The company managed to log in good performance in exports with 39 per cent growth to 51,369 tonnes from 36,954 tonnes, it added.
JSL Managing Director Abhyuday Jindal said, as a result of robust product-mix and diversification into special grades, JSL was able to deliver a steady performance despite challenging macro-economic environment.
Demand from certain segments like automobiles remained muted in the quarter, he added.
"We are happy to note the government's initiative announced in the latest Budget, taking cognizance of the need to review operational FTAs (free trade agreements). We hope that it will bring the domestic industry to the level playing field it deserves," Jindal said.
During April-December 2019, total stainless steel imports soared to 640,000 tonnes as compared to about 350,000 tonnes in the same period of 2018, he said.
The domestic stainless steel industry continued to suffer due to continuous dumping of subsidised stainless steel products at irrational prices. While the onslaught of imports hampered the profitability of big producers, the dumping rendered capacities of several small producers idle, and turned them from producers to traders, he added.