The board of agri-solutions provider Coromandel International Ltd has given its nod to set up a phosphoric and sulphuric acid plants towards backward integration capabilities, a top official has said.
The proposal would further enhance the company's cost efficiencies, raw material security and can contribute towards the 'Government's vision of an Atmanirbhar Bharat', company Executive Vice-Chairman Arun Alagappan said.
The Murugappa Group company, meanwhile, recorded a profit after tax for the October-December 2023 quarter at Rs 243 crore, as compared to Rs 539 crore registered during the same period of last year.
"Agri inputs industry experienced a challenging quarter with external headwinds such as below normal monsoons and lower crop sowings. The NBS rates for the Rabi season underwent a steep downward revision which coupled with the rising raw material prices further impacted the industry's performance," Alagappan said.
The profit after tax for the nine months period ending December 31, 2023 stood at Rs 1,510 crore as against Rs 1,773 crore registered in the same period of last year.
Total income for the nine-month period ending December 31, 2023 declined to Rs 18,281 crore from Rs 24,265 crore registered a year ago.
"Despite the challenges, Coromandel's Nutrient and Allied businesses improved its market share during the quarter amidst decline in sales volumes. The crop protection business improved its market share during the quarter amidst decline in sales volumes," Alagappan said in a statement.
The crop protection business of the company reported a healthy volume growth of 21 per cent improving its performance in exports and domestic markets, he added.
Observing that the short-term business environment remains 'challenging', he said Coromandel would continue to invest in value creation opportunities through efficiency improvement programmes, horizontal and vertical expansions. Towards this, the Board in its meeting approved the company's plan to expand its backward integration capabilities by setting up Phosphoric and Sulphuric acid plants at its Kakinada fertiliser unit, subject to receiving regulatory approvals."
On the company's subsidiary Dhaksha, engaged in drone manufacture, he said it has built a strong order book from the defence, agriculture and enterprise customers and is ramping up its production capacity during the current year. Coromandel International is actively promoting usage of drones in agriculture through its 'Gromor Drive' programme and through its retail chain, he added.