Even as it put on the block 50 acres, dry cell battery major Eveready Industries India Ltd. (EIIL) ruled out distress sale, saying that it would wait for the right price for either selling these plots directly or developing them through a joint venture.
Talking to journalists after the launch of rechargeable emergency lights, EIIL Executive Director Amritanshu Khaitan said that EIIL was likely to break-even or post marginal profit in 2012-13.
“We expect 6-7 per cent growth in topline which stood at Rs.980 crore in 2011-12,” he said. The company suffered a Rs.79.9-crore net loss in 2011-12, including a write-off on account of an overseas acquisition.
He said that new opportunities had opened up through digitisation of cable TV, as the market for AA and AAA batteries was estimated to have expanded by around 40 million units. “About 40 million homes have shifted to digitised TV viewing and this is our estimate of their annual requirement of these batteries,” he said.
Eveready gets 60 per cent of its revenues from batteries, with the rest coming from flashlights, lighting systems, tea and exports.
Mr. Khaitan said that while EIIL had created a ‘land bank’ comprising properties that it wanted to sell in Kolkata, Hyderabad, Lucknow and Noida, there would be no distress sale. “We will wait for the real estate sector to improve, and we are open to a joint venture but no discussions are on now. No transaction is expected to be concluded in the next 24 months,” he said.
On the new product line-up, Mr. Khaitan said the new rechargeable fans and lamps come with LED technology and provide air up to 2.5 hours and light up to 20 hours.
EIIL is expecting to garner Rs.50 crore additionally from new rechargeable lighting products, including lanterns in the first year of operations. Rechargeable lighting at present contributes Rs.100 crore.
The market for these products would be in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh where there were heavy power cuts, he said.
Launches rechargeable lighting products