Mumbai: India’s top tobacco firm, ITC Ltd., reported on Friday 27 July, a 20% rise in quarterly net profit on the back of higher cigarette prices and robust growth in its packaged foods and hotels businesses.
ITC, 31.7% owned by British American Tobacco, has entered personal care, apparel, retail and snack foods recently, but cigarettes make up two-thirds of revenues.
The Kolkata-based company said net profit rose to Rs7.83 billion ($193 million) in the fiscal first quarter to end-June from 6.52 billion a year earlier, beating a Reuters forecast of 7.10 billion.
A value-added tax of 12.5% imposed on cigarette sales from April has pushed up prices, and ITC has said it was concerned taxes and tight regulations can affect revenues.
ITC shares, valued at $15.6 billion, gained 3% in the quarter, trailing a 12% rise in the main index and a 5% rise in the sector index. ($1=40.5 rupees)