Steel demand is expected to improve further: Seshagiri Rao, JSW Steel


JSW Steel is India’s leading primary and integrated steel producer. JSW Steel is the flagship company of the JSW group with an installed capacity of 18 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) by mid-2016. It offers a wide gamut of steel products that includes Hot Rolled, Cold Rolled, Bare & Pre-painted Galvanized & Galvalume, TMT Rebars, Wire Rods and Special Steel.

NewsBarons provides you the highlights of a media interaction where Joint MD Seshagiri Rao says “We expect second half of the year to be better as compared to first  half.”

NB: Brief us about your Financials?

Seshagiri Rao: JSW Steel Ltd posted results for the second quarter ended 30th September, 2017.

The net profit for the quarter was at Rs. 836 crore, up 29% YoY.

The revenue from operation stood at Rs.16,818 crore, up by 17% YoY.

NB:How How was the quarter as a whole?

Seshagiri Rao: The crude steel production during the quarter stood at 3.94mn tonnes. The production was impacted by continued water shortage in the South, particularly in Tamil Nadu, as well as availability of iron ore at Vijayanagar.

While saleable steel sales volume for the quarter was 3.92mn tonnes.

As the impact of GST rollout on channel sales begun to stabilize,
JSW Steel’s consolidated domestic sales volume increased by 12% QoQ, while retail sales have grown by 24% on QoQ basis.

With better international demand, the company focused on increasing exports volumes which surged by 33% QoQ.

We are well short of our guidance in the first half by 2%.We have a guidance of 16.5mn tonnes of production.

Steel imports into India have increased sharply in the last quarter displacing domestic volumes. A surge in imports of flat products in Q2 met almost the entire QoQ growth in flat products consumption in the quarter.

Crude steel production in India increased by 4.5%YoY in H1FY18 and the apparent finished steel consumption grew by 4.3%YoY.
However, consumption of domestically produced steel increased only by 2.8% YoY as imports surged rapidly.

NB:What is your take on steel demand?

Seshagiri Rao:Steel demand is expected to improve further with government focus on infrastructure build up like roads, water and gas pipelines etc. Bank recapitalisation will pave way for an uptick in credit growth and possible restart of the investment cycle.

NB:Are you in race for Italian long products company Aferpi?

Seshagiri Rao: We are seeing opportunities in Italy and Europe.

NB:What is your outlook for the coming quarters?

Seshagiri Rao:We expect second half of the year to be better as compared to first half.

NB:Comment on your Capex plans?

Seshagiri Rao: We are planning to invest Rs. 8000 crore for the current year.

The current debt stands at 42,764 crore. The company stands with a net debt to EBITDA ratio at 3.67x.