Larsen & Toubro, India’s biggest engineering and construction company, on Friday reported a 19 per cent year-on-year rise in consolidated net profits to Rs 1,030 crore for the three months to December. The rise came on the back of a slight pick-up in orders from the roads and power transmission sectors.
However, operating profit margins came in lower at 10.30 per cent against 12 per cent in Q3FY15, driving down the Ebitda (earnings before interest taxes, depreciation and amortisation) by 8 per cent to Rs 2,650 crore. L&T’s net sales rose just 8 per cent y-o-y to Rs 25,830 crore.
CFO R Shankar Raman said the year was expected to close with order inflows at levels similar to those in FY15 of around Rs 1.55 lakh crore. He told mediapersons it was not without reason the company had got close to Rs 93,000 crore of fresh orders in nine months, in an environment in which there was anxiety on investments and orders. “There has been some pick-up witnessed in the project awards in sectors such as transportation, power transmission and water programmes are moving forward,” he said.
Raman said a revival in private sector capex was still some time away, even as companies in a few sectors like IT, automobile, construction, healthcare and leisure are continuing to invest. “The private sector will be very careful and only those balance sheets that can afford investment and financial closure will look at this environment little more positively than they did a year ago. Because everybody believes the uptick is around the bend,” he said. In the September 2015 quarter, the company had scaled down its guidance on order inflow to a 5-7 per cent growth, against the earlier forecast of 10-15 per cent.
SN Subrahmanyan, deputy managing director and president, L&T said, “Policies are being announced, good intentions are there, the macroeconomic factors are pretty good, what needs to be done is to get the projects initiated…” FE