Earnings Review: Bajaj Auto, Dr Reddy’s, Sesa Goa, BoB, Asian Paints, United Spirits, CG, Lupin, Zee, UBI, Ashok Leyland and Glenmark
Munira Dongre 02 August 2010

BAJAJ AUTO (Q1) - Zooming ahead of competition

Results were within expectations though sales were on the higher side and profit was on the lower side. All segments did well - motorcycles up 72%, two-wheelers up 71%, three-wheelers up 58% and exports up 82%.

Margins went up slightly due to scale of operation (volumes were up almost 70%) and lower employee costs. Increase in production at Pantnagar led to lower tax rate. Other income was also higher because of the Duty Entitlement Pass Book scheme benefits from the higher scale of exports. The management believes export volume will be strong and will be primarily driven by the African markets (51%) followed by Sri Lanka, Egypt and Columbia. Bajaj\'s total production capacity is
4.26 million units per annum (pa), which it plans to increase to 4.98 million units pa, but it may still face supply constraints in the festive season as it is already operating at full capacity. In its analyst call, it reiterated its guidance to clock 4 million vehicle sales in FY11. It seemed confident about the volume success of recently-launched models Pulsar 135 and Discover 150. The company has said that it has hiked prices in the export markets (it has already hiked the same in domestic markets) in July 2010. Bajaj expects steel and aluminium prices to soften and expects to benefit in terms of raw
material costs.

DR REDDY\'S LABS (Q1) - All eyes on the US

Adjusting for one-offs, both sales and profits were way below expectations. Revenue growth faltered due to lower-than-expected core generic revenue in the US and a fall in PSAI (Pharmaceutical Services and Active Ingredients). However, sales growth in India and Russia ROW branded finished dosage markets was strong. Betapharma (Germany) saw a further 6% reduction. Going forward, one needs to track traction in branded formulations and US businesses closely. Revenue generation from limited competition products (US) in 2HFY11E will be important. It now has five ParaIV/low competition products - namely Arixtra (GSK, Fondaparinux, preventing blood clots); Prilosec OTC
(AstraZeneca, omeprazole, controls stomach acid); Prograf  (Astellas Pharma, tacrolimus, lowers immune system); Lotrel (Novartis, amlodipine and benazepril, relaxes blood vessels) and Clarinex
(Schering, desloratadine, antihistamine).

SESA GOA (Q1) - A lot hinges on shipments picking up

Results were mostly better than expectations; realisations at $92/tonne were above almost everybody\'s expectations. Volumes were sharply lower q-o-q but 14% higher y-o-y. Iron ore costs per tonne also rose sharply. It is possible that iron ore shipments will pick up in 2HFY11 due to favourable weather but China demand needs to be followed closely.

Another big factor in stock performance will be ramping up of volumes. Existing permissions allow Sesa shipments of 25 million tonnes (MT) per year - it remains confident of ramping up production to 50MT in 2-3 years. However, it is facing challenges in getting new permits especially from the ministry of environment and forests (a recent example: the forest permits in Karnataka), which may
delay volume expansions. Rail freights may also weigh on the stock performance - these have gone up by Rs900/tonne from mid-March (largely applicable to Orissa in Sesa\'s case where its production is 640k tonnes). Mining companies are lobbying with the Indian Railways to cut freight.

BANK OF BARODA - Way ahead of the street

The bank surprised the street on profit and NII numbers. Overseas advances and deposit growth came in strong too - but could be peaking out. Asset quality slipped a wee bit. The bank has contained slippages below its target of 1.25% for the past six quarters. Restructured assets were Rs53 billion (2.8% of loans), of which ~9% have turned NPAs (bit on the higher side). However, its coverage ratios are more than adequate. Staff costs were lower. CASA at 35.3% slipped a bit q-o-q but is still to get back to 3QFY10 levels of 37%. Fee income growth is an area where the bank has scope to grow.

ASIAN PAINTS (Q1) - Margin protection

Results were generally better than expected numbers. Recent price increases indicate it will continue to defend margins. Another 2% price hike likely in August so there is some stocking up at the dealer end and that too has driven high sales this quarter. The company has warned that it could face high raw material prices especially in titanium dioxide and acrylic acid.

UNITED SPIRITS (Q1) - Good show (excluding AP)

Results were in line with estimates. Whyte & Mackay posted an EBIDTA of £5.93 million versus £5.44 million in Q1FY10. Volumes were impacted because of Andhra Pradesh where there was a delay in renewal of licenses. Excluding AP, volumes were up 15% y-o-y. As expected, interest charges shot up.

CROMPTON GREAVES (Q1) - International operations pick up

International subsidiary revenues picked up 7% in euro terms against a 13%-14% decline in the past three quarters. Subsidiary order inflow growth was also strong. While orders for its standalone power business remained strong too, the flat revenues were due to delays in client off-take and sluggish exports. Consumer products and industrial segments showed strong growth. Margins were better due to cost-saving measures.

CG maintained its full-year revenue growth guidance of 15% at the standalone level and 5% at the subsidiary level (in local currency terms).

LUPIN (Q1) - A little disappointing

Lupin\'s numbers were not quite up to the mark, probably because expectations were high. Excluding US one-offs, it reported a 15% increase in sales. The key revenue drivers in the quarter were
domestic formulations (up 21%, 34% of sales) and the US business (up 25%, 32% of sales). Japan growth was sluggish. Its US branded business reported healthy growth.

ZEE ENTERTAINMENT (Q1) - Star threat still clear and present

Results were more or less on the lower end of the expectations spectrum. Losses in the sports channels (Zee Sports and Ten Sports) dragged down margins. Ad and subscription revenue growth was steady.

UNION BANK OF INDIA (Q1) - Ambitious targets

Profit growth was at 36%; loan growth at 30% and NII growth was at 68%. The results looked good except for higher slippages. The management has set up ambitious targets - 25% loan growth; 22% deposit growth, CASA at 35% from the current 33%; RoE of 25%; RoA of 1.25%, transaction through electronic mode to reach 50% and gross NPA levels below 2.1% with slippages at 1.85%.

ASHOK LEYLAND (Q1) - Strong quarter

Good volume growth led to a 157% increase in sales. EBITDA margin at 10% was the best in 8 years. Since the Pantnagar plant has begun operations, interest payments are now no longer being capitalised, hence interest payments were higher - however, it is expected to make up for this in terms of margins. AL upped its volume guidance for FY11 to 89,000 units. Engine volumes declined to 4,000 units from 5,400, due to a fall in supply of \'Leypower\' engines to the telecom sector.

GLENMARK PHARMA (Q1): Out-licensing saves the day

Base business was subdued. The generic formulation business reported only 6% revenue from the USA. The domestic formulations business was good at 19%. Out-licensing revenue growth was good. Going forward, Tarka\'s generic launch will show fully from Q2, more out-licensing deals and milestone payments expected.
 

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