I am herewith presenting the annual report of your Company for the financial year (FY)2019-20 in challenging times.
COVID-19 has impacted every person and every sphere of life. Due to the country-widelockdown normal business operations came to a halt and some sectors of the economycontinue to be in stasis.
I am happy to report that despite the difficult situation your Company recordedsatisfactory performance in FY 2019-20 and it is well poised to stay on its journey ofsustainable growth.
Your Company achieved consolidated revenue of Rs 985.27 crores for the year ended 31stMarch 2020 a decrease of 5.16% over the previous year's consolidated revenue of Rs1038.90 crores. Consolidated profit before tax (PBT) was Rs 178.86 crores 1.77% lowerthan the figure for the previous year. The return on capital employed (ROCE) was 25.8%.
During the year your Board of Directors declared an interim dividend at Rs 17.00 pershare (170%) which includes a special dividend of Rs 10.00 per share (100%). The Board ofDirectors have not recommended any further dividend and have recommended that the interimdividend declared as above be treated as the final dividend for the year ended 31st March2020.
The top and bottom line growth of your Company would have been higher but for thelockdown. Particularly our strong order b ook for international sales in the fourthquarter was significantly affected. Domestic sales from depots around the country alsocould not take place as planned. Both these factors significantly affected the year-endinginventory value which increased by Rs 18.7 crores compared to the previous year-end inthe standalone financials.
The sustained profitability of your Company in the rest of the year was driven by itsportfolio of differentiated products. V2 our path-breaking and patented solution for theproblem of biofouling of aquaculture nets received a
tremendous market response and is now an established game-changer in key markets.Deploying V2 your Company met the cage-net requirements of the world's first-of-its-kindoffshore salmon project. V2 was also established for cage nets and predator nets in theChilean market.
Breakthroughs were achieved for other technology innovations as well. X12 our solutionto the problem of sea lice was grabbed by a large customer in North America. Our compactand low shrinkage Sapphire Next Generation (SNG) netting continued to gain popularity inEurope. In Africa we made inroads supplying fully assembled pelagic trawls. Various newrope products were introduced for aquaculture mooring. In the international sports-alliedbusiness we made a mark with frames and other accessories. A breakthrough was achieved inthe US market for our geo-textiles and a new product flexible rope net gabions wascommercially launched with a large order from Europe.
On the domestic front cyclones and an extended monsoon affected our growth in thefisheries segment in the first half of the financial year. However your Company couldovercome this setback due to its presence in diverse segments. FY 19-20 was particularly agood year for the geosynthetics division. It continued to consolidate its presence in thefocus sectors of railways roads and industrial landfills and demonstrated excellentexecution of projects.
Your Company earned much appreciation from customers and business and industry-specificpublications during the year. Our R&D team bagged four patents and several more arein the pipeline. Our manufacturing teams responded smartly to dynamic market demands andour finance team managed working capital astutely to generate higher funds fromoperations. We continued to strengthen our commitment to our core values with theinitiative of rewarding 'Living Values' across all the levels in the organization. It alsogives me pride to report that
for the third year in a row your Company was ranked as a 'Great Place to Work'. Ouremployees are our core resource and their welfare is a matter of our utmost concern.Despite the business challenges imposed by COVID-19 we have not resorted to any layoffs.
As a responsible corporate citizen your Company participated in the fight againstCOVID-19 by contributing to the PM Cares Fund partnering with the Mahratta Chamber ofCommerce Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA) in its Pune Platform for COVID-19 Response(PPCR) initiatives. Your Company also undertook some traffic safety projects under its CSRinitiatives.
Looking at the future I am happy to report that after the lifting of the lockdown yourCompany resumed a large part of its operations taking all due precautions for the healthof employees. Even during the lockdown period your Company received international ordersand this attests to the superiority of our value propositions. While several sectors ofthe domestic economy continue to be in a state of shock our positioning in thefood-supply industry and international presence give us considerable insulation fromrecessionary trends. We are financially strong and our cash reserves are a big asset inthese challenging times. We remain strongly committed to the execution of our strategicplans and barring unforeseen circumstances we are well placed to stay on the trajectoryof growth.
I look forward to your continued support in our effort towards delivering enhancedvalue to all stakeholders.
With warm regards
|V. R. Garware |
|Chairman & Managing Director |