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India: newsbytes from the cement industry

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World Cement,

Turnaround for India Cements

India Cements’ Managing Director, N Srinivasan, told shareholders at this week’s AGM that the company has turned a corner after two tough years. He said that focusing on reducing costs together with improved prices led to an increase in operating profit to Rs.431.26 crore in the six months ending 30 September 2015 from Rs.349.70 crore in the same period of the previous year – despite a drop in sales volumes. Srinivasan expressed his hopes that a new housing scheme in Andhra Pradesh as well as government investment in Tamil Nadu would result in increased demand and that next year would see better capacity utilisation and continuing improved performance.

Port link-up

India’s Vice Chairman of Planning Board, S Niranjan Reddy, has written to the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, requesting a link from Mumbai Port to the existing and new ports being built in eastern Andrha Pradesh via Telangana. Reddy reportedly pointed out that the link would shorten the distance between the two locations and promote local enterprises. Goods being transported along this link would include food products, cotton and cement.

Jaypee could be out of cement business by March

The Jaypee Group is hoping to sell its cement business by next March, according to reports. The company has been selling off cement assets to clear debts, and has sold more than 13 million t of cement capacity this year. So far, the assets have gone to UltraTech, Dalmia Cement and Shree Cement. In this latest round of sales, two private equity firms and a strategic partner are reportedly in the race for assets with an enterprise valuation close to Rs.19 500 crore.

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