The audited financial results of Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) for the year 2011–12, taken on record by its board of directors, showed the company’s turnover for January–March (Q4) of FY ’12 growing 13% over the corresponding period last year (CPLY) to Rs. 14,785 crore. SAIL’s Q4 profit before tax (PBT), at Rs. 2,301 crore, was 3.4% higher than CPLY, while profit after tax (PAT), at Rs. 1,577 crore, showed improvement of 3% over CPLY. The company’s profitability during Q4 showed substantial improvement over the previous quarter (Oct–Dec ’11).
The robust performance in Q4 helped the company achieve gross sales turnover of over Rs. 50,000 crore during FY 2011–12 for the first time since inception, with a growth of 7% over the previous year. Massive cost push due to a variety of factors, however, chipped away the topline gains, resulting in SAIL’s FY ’12 PBT and PAT falling 28% y-o-y to Rs. 5,151 crore and Rs. 3,543 crore, respectively. The effect of input price increase, amounting to over Rs. 4,000 crore, mainly of imported coking coal with average prices rising to $288 in FY ’12 from $213 the previous year, was compounded by the volatility in dollar-rupee valuations, carrying an adverse impact of around Rs. 900 crore.
Under SAIL’s modernization and expansion (M&E) plan, capital expenditure during FY ’12 crossed Rs. 11,000 crore, taking cumulative expenditure on this count during the 11th Five Year Plan to Rs. 40,321 crore. M&E projects completed during 2011–12 included installation of a new turbo blower and rebuilding of coke oven batteries (COBs) 1 and 2 at Bokaro Steel Plant, rebuilding of COB-6 at Bhilai Steel Plant, installation of new ladle furnace at Alloy Steels Plant, etc. SAIL has pegged outlay on M&E during the 12th Five Year Plan at Rs. 45,000 crore, including Rs. 14,500 crore during the current financial year.
During 2012–13, several new major production units will become operational at SAIL’s IISCO Steel Plant at Burnpur, including the raw material handling system, sinter plant, COB-11, blast furnace, steel meltshop (SMS) and casters, power blowing station and wire rod mill, paving the way for full-fledged operations to start in this greenfield plant. Major facilities to be completed in other SAIL plants include:
- 700 tpd oxygen plant (operational since 3 May 2012) and ore handling plant at Bhilai Steel Plant.
- Medium structural mill and rebuilt COB-2 at Durgapur Steel Plant.
- New raw material handling system, sinter plant-3, new COB-6, new blast furnace-5, new slab caster and converter at Rourkela Steel Plant.
- Hot metal desulfurization unit in SMS-2, cold rolling mill-3 and casthouse granulation system for BFs 1, 2 and 3 at Bokaro Steel Plant.
With SAIL meeting CAPEX requirements mainly through internal resources, the company’s market borrowings were reduced by around Rs. 3,050 crore during FY ’12, taking its debt-equity ratio to 0.41-to-1 as on 31 March 2012. SAIL’s net worth on 31 March 2012 was Rs. 39,811 crore, as against Rs. 37,069 crore a year ago.
During 2011–12, the company’s subsidiary, Maharashtra Elektrosmelt Ltd (MEL), was amalgamated with SAIL and renamed Chandrapur Ferro Alloy Plant. The Salem Refractory Unit of Burn Standard Company Limited (BSCL) was also transferred to SAIL Refractory Company Limited (SRCL), a wholly owned subsidiary of SAIL during the year.