Aditya Birla group company Hindalco Industries on Tuesday reported a 11 per cent jump in net profit at Rs 534 crore in the first quarter of current fiscal against Rs.481 crore in the same quarter in the previous year. The company's revenues moved up smartly by 33 per cent to Rs.5,178 crore (Rs.3,897 crore) and the operating profit was up 8 per cent at Rs.901 crore (Rs.833 crore).

The higher sales were driven by higher volumes, better product/geographic mix and improved realisation. Additionally its low cost advantage, arising from integration and captive coal for own power generation for the Hirakud smelter, cushioned the adverse impact of spiralling cost escalations of crude as well as purchased coal for Renukoot and plummeting copper concentrate. The company also benefited from higher aluminium LME and better by-product realisation in its copper business.

The aluminium business contributed Rs.1,867 crore to total revenues while copper revenues were up 34 per cent at Rs.3,314 crore. Operations of the Hirakud aluminium smelter were affected in July by heavy rains and consequently, production is expected to be lower by around 20,000 tonnes this year.

Brownfield projects

The Hirakud smelter expansion from 1.55 lakh tonnes to 1.61 lakh tonnes is scheduled for completion by the second quarter of 2010-11 while further expansion to 2.13 lakh tonnes along with 100 MW power plant will be completed in the fourth quarter of 2011-12. It will be subsequently expanded to 3.60 lakh tonnes with a corresponding increase in back-up captive power to 967.5 MW.

The Hirakud flat rolled products project is slated for completion in the second quarter of 2011-12 while the Belgaum special alumina project is to be ramped up to 3.16 lakh tonnes from 1.38 lakh tonnes.

Greenfield ventures

In greenfield projects, the company is setting up a 3.6 lakh tonne aluminium smelter capacity plant at Mahan in Madhya Pradesh with a 900 MW captive power plant. The first metal from the smelter is expected by the second quarter of 2011-12.

A replica of this project is coming up at Sonahatu, Jharkhand, and the first metal is expected in the first quarter of 2013-14.

The 3.6 lakh tonnes Aditya aluminium project along with a 900 MW captive power plant is coming up in Orissa. The first metal from the smelter is expected by the third quarter of 2011-12. The 1.5 million tonnes Aditya alumina refinery project with a 90 MW co-gen plant in Orissa is a replica of Utkal Alumina refinery. The refinery would be mechanically complete by the first quarter of 2013-14.

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