Bangalore: Property developer Unitech Ltd posted a 52.42% increase in net profit to Rs.84.17 crore for the three months ended 31 December from a year earlier as it focused on completing under-construction projects rather than launching new ones and restructuring its debt.
The Gurgaon-based real estate firm’s revenue rose by 25.37% to Rs.644.72 crore during the same period, the company said on Wednesday.
Over the last year, Unitech has tried to return its focus to its main business of real estate after it exited the telecom business last year following a long-drawn out and messy settlement with telecom partner Telenor ASA of Norway.
In a statement, Unitech said it had a healthy balance sheet and its consolidated net debt as of 31 December 2012 was Rs.5,421 crore. The net debt-to-equity ratio as of December 2012 was 0.45, “one of the lowest in the industry”, the company said in the statement.
“There has been a significant scale up in construction activity in the recent months and the worker strength at sites reached an all-time high recently. Company is focused on further ramping the construction activity in the coming months with a view to not only clear the delivery backlog of the older projects but also commence delivery of finished product in some new projects,” Unitech’s managing director Sanjay Chandra said in the statement.
Sequentially, Unitech’s net profit and revenue increased 71.11% and 19.61%, respectively.
Chandra, in the statement, said residential property demand remained stable and average price realization for residential property had witnessed a continuous increase for the last four quarters.
“Going forward, the company will endeavour to maximize price realization, improve sales and reduce the risk of delay in delivery through optimal timing of project launches and selling product over the life cycle of a project. Towards this endeavour, company has commenced construction at certain sites where it intends to launch projects in the near future,” he said.
Analysts have indicated that bank lending to the realty firm has become easier and that it could help in speeding up project execution.
“The company has ramped up execution and is focusing on completing ongoing projects rather than launching many new ones,” said a Mumbai-based analyst, who didn’t want to be named.
Unitech shares closed unchanged at Rs.28.75 per share on Wednesday on BSE while the exchange’s benchmark Sensex rose 0.24% to close at 19,608.08 points and the Realty Index dropped 1.15% to close at 2,062.26 points.
On Tuesday, Unitech shares tumbled as much as 24.71% to Rs.26.35 in intra-day trade on BSE. They recouped some of the losses and closed 17.86% lower at Rs.28.75.
Unitech stock plummeted after Chandra was questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in connection with the case related to alleged improprieties in the allocation of 2G spectrum and licences in 2008.
Chandra was in jail for a few months in 2011 in the same case.
CBI has replaced a public prosecutor who was allegedly in touch with Chandra and had discussed certain points regarding prosecution and defence strategy with him. The investigating agency said on Tuesday that it had registered a preliminary enquiry, after the television channel CNN-IBN aired the audio tape of a conversation purported to be between Chandra and the prosecutor.
Unitech said in a statement released on Tuesday that Chandra “wishes to make it absolutely clear that he has never met the prosecutor in the 2G case outside of court or had any phone conversation with him. He denies the suggestion that his voice is on any alleged recording”.