RIL posts record profit in Q4 and FY18


New Delhi, Apr 27 (PTI) Oil-to-telecom conglomerate Reliance Industries today reported its highest quarterly net profit of Rs 9,435 crore on record earnings from petrochemical and retail business and rise in profitability of its upstart telecom unit, Jio.

Consolidated net profit of Rs 9,435 crore, or Rs 15.9 per share, in January-March was 17.3 per cent higher than Rs 8,046 crore, or Rs 13.6 a share, in the same quarter of the last fiscal, the company said in a statement.

While its core petrochemical business posted record quarterly pre-tax profits, earnings from the oil refining business dipped on squeeze in margins. However, the surprise package was retail which clocked over 200 per cent rise in pre-tax profit.

Helped by rise in earnings across businesses, Reliance Industries posted a record net profit of Rs 36,075 crore in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2018, up 20.6 per cent over Rs 29,901 crore net profit of 2016-17 fiscal. It had highest ever PBDIT (profit before depreciation interest and taxes) of Rs 74,184 crore.

Jio, which with 186.6 million subscribers is the world’s largest and fastest growing mobile data network, saw profits rise to Rs 510 crore, up 1.2 per cent over third quarter earnings. Though Jio started operations in September 2016 with free voice and data offering, 2017-18 was first full year of its financial reporting.
For the 2017-18 fiscal – the first full year of commercial operation – it had a net profit of Rs 723 crore.

Reliance said pre-tax profit from petrochemical business, where all expansion projects have been completed, was at record high of Rs 6,435 crore in the fourth quarter of the 2017-18 fiscal, up 12 per cent over last year. The owner of world’s largest refining complex earned USD 11 on turning every barrel of crude oil into fuel in January-March as against a gross refining margin (GRM) of USD 11.5 in the same period last year. The lower GRM pushed down pre-tax segment profit by 11 per cent to Rs 5,607 crore.

Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, or Jio, disrupted the telecom industry with free voice and cut-price data in September 2016 and started commercial operations in second quarter of FY18 with a loss of Rs 271 crore.
It has been blamed for falling profits of industry peers like Bharti Airtel which earlier this week reported its first loss in 15 years from India operations.

Reliance’s oil and gas business saw widening of loss to Rs 600 crore from Rs 486 crore loss in Q4 of last fiscal as the output continued to fall.

Adding 86 stores to take 3,837 outlets across 750 cities, Reliance Retail saw segment revenue more than double to Rs 24,183 crore and pre-tax earnings soar 208.5 per cent to Rs 1,086 crore. Retail business is, however, yet to make its first net profit.

Company chairman and richest Indian Mukesh Ambani said, “FY 2017-18 was a landmark year for Reliance where we established several records on both operating and financial parameters. Reliance has become the first Indian company to record PBDIT of over USD 10 billion with each of our key businesses – refining, petrochemicals, retail and digital services achieving record earnings performance.”

“We have established strong foundations in retailing and digital services business with world-class supply chain management and network infrastructure which will serve our customers well,” he said. “The growing Indian market provides exciting opportunities to scale up these businesses and maximise long-term shareholder value in the coming years.”

Revenue in Q4 was up 39 per cent at Rs 129,120 crore. The company’s debt rose to Rs 2,18,763 crore as on March 31, up from Rs Rs 2,13,206 crore on December 31, 2017. Outstanding debt as on March 31, 2017 was Rs 196,601 crore. Cash in hand was also marginally higher at Rs 78,063 crore as compared to Rs 78,617 crore as of December.

Reliance declared a dividend of Rs 6 per equity share on the enhanced share capital on account of bonus issue in the ratio of 1:1 last year.

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