The past year has been one of unprecedented challenges for individuals communitiescorporates and economies around the world. In India the severe second wave of thepandemic has caused tremendous agony and suffering with innumerable lives succumbing tothe virus. Yet despite all the downsides and our resilience being tested across allareas the pandemic has also shown us the innovative and indefatigable spirit ofhumankind. Moreover the development of vaccines worldwide in record time demonstrates howworking in unison can help us achieve even the most difficult targets.
At Paramount our people have also demonstrated incredible grit resilience andsolidarity to surmount the challenges of this pandemic-hit year. I take this opportunityto express my pride and gratitude for their efforts. Further despite our financialperformance being lower than our expectations our continued focus on quality customersatisfaction innovation cost containment and employee safety has positioned ParamountCables for future success.
We entered fiscal 2021 with the nationwide lockdown resulting in our plants being shutdown for almost one month.
With the gradual unlocking of the Indian economy we swiftly swung back into action.Our plants recommenced operations following all government guidelines and ensuringadherence to COVID-19 safety protocols. However localized restrictions and weak demandfrom end markets due to the overall slowdown in economic activity resulted in ourperformance being subdued for the full year. Furthermore exports which contributesignificantly to our revenues were also impacted due to lost/delayed sales and inventorybuild-up with several overseas markets and airports being in a state of lockdown.
Our sales revenues declined from 6062 million in FY 2019-20 to 5191 million in FY2020-21. While we maintained strict control on non-discretionary expenses and adoptedausterity measures EBIDTA declined from 477 million to 190 million.
New ways of doing business in COVID-19 times and increased expenditure towardsmaintaining health and safety contributed to high overheads.
As we faced the once-in-a-century health crisis we hoped for the best yet prepared forthe worst. We invoked our business continuity plans and rapidly implemented measures toensure the safety and wellbeing of our employees while protecting our operations at allour sites.
As our people whose role allowed them to work from home transitioned to a remoteworking environment and our team at manufacturing plants adjusted to new shift schedulesand working norms we quickly got our operations back on track. With physical distancingbeing the need of the hour in the post-COVID world technology and digital solutions wereextensively deployed to enable seamless functioning.
We remained steadfast towards being a trusted partner to our customers by ensuringtimely and seamless delivery of world-class products. For our EPC projects we continuedto focus on strong project performance. With supply chain disruptions challengingmanufacturing operations across the world we maintained agility by collaborating withregular and alternate vendors to ensure the uninterrupted supply of raw materials. Costoptimization without compromising on the health safety and overall wellbeing of ouremployees was another key focus area to manage through this period of uncertainty. I amglad to share that none of our employees were retrenched during the lockdown period andvaccination drives have been taking place across all our sites. Further we continued tobuild on our relationships with all our stakeholders including our distributors andcommunities by extending support for navigating this crisis.
Although we entered the new fiscal still being challenged by the pandemic there havebeen significant positive developments in the operating environment that augur well foryour Company.
The Government has renewed the thrust on infrastructure e. development to reviveeconomic activity. Under the National
Infrastructure Pipeline an ambitious sum of 111 lakh crore have been allocated forvarious infrastructure projects across the country. As projects are rolled out ondifferent fronts power roads railways metro rail housing digitalizationtelecommunications petrochemicals and renewables among others it will generate highdemand for wires and cables in India.
Operations across various sectors are now on a stronger footing with the massvaccination drive gathering momentum and the pandemic situation under better control.Meanwhile the activation of the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme by theGovernment to realize the vision of India becoming Atmanirbhar or aself-reliant economy is incentivizing domestic manufacturing. Additionally globalplayers are increasingly adopting a China Plus One strategy thereby enhancingthe opportunities for India to become a global manufacturing hub. In line with thesedevelopments private investments are expected to pick up for revamping and expansion ofexisting infrastructure thus driving the demand for wires and cables.
Over the years we have built strong relationships with our customers by meeting theirneeds with the best quality products.
Our strong prequalification criteria wide product range and cost competitivenessfurther enhance the value that we bring to them.
Backed by these credentials we are confident of capitalizing on the growingopportunities and pushing forward our institutional and export businesses. Meanwhile wealso remain geared to strengthen our retail revenues by strengthening our distributionnetwork for housing wires and cables.
In summary it has been a trying year for us with institutional orders facing aslowdown even as we managed the complex challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and itseffects on our business. However as explained above there are several reasons to beoptimistic for FY 2021-22 and beyond. The strength we have built into our business overthe years will enable us to extract the best value from these opportunities making uslook to the future with We have ample balances of cash and liquid investments and have lowinterest burden; our healthy balance sheet should enable us to sustain our businessthrough any potential prolonged pandemic. Our employees are very skilled and dedicated todelivering even in changing circumstances. Finally having faced the storm of COVID-19 wehave emerged even stronger with all the learnings and experiences. The Company looksforward to continuing to provide quality products and services to our customers and a safework environment for our employees generating a rebound in our revenues and profits anddriving value creation for all.
On behalf of the Board I would like to thank our employees once again for theirresilience and commitment in this exceptional year. I would also like to express ourgratitude to our customers business partners channel partners shareholders and allother stakeholders for their continued support.
My best wishes for your health and safety during these challenging times.
Chairman and CEO