New Delhi: Hinduja Group flagship company Ashok Leyland Ltd is gearing up to expand its light commercial vehicle business, international operations and defence mobility segment, even as it looks to take the proven success of its Optare electric bus in the UK to other countries.

Addressing shareholders in Ashok Leyland's annual report 2017-18, chairman Dheeraj Hinduja said going forward, there would be a greater focus on cost control, revenue generation and return on capital employed (ROCE).

"In the years to follow, to sustain the growth momentum and take a great leap forward, your company is gearing to set globally benchmarked standards in reliability and after-market support," he said. There will be added thrust on cost control, cash generation and ROCE. "Furthermore, ambitious plans will be rolled out soon to grow the LCV business, international operations and defence mobility even further," he added.

On electric vehicles, Hinduja said Ashok Leyland plans to leverage the proven success of its Optare electric bus range in both developed and emerging markets.

"Your company will leverage on the proven success of the Optare range in the UK to position integrated offerings that straddle developed and emerging markets," Hinduja said.

"Having performed well in the recent years in the highs and lows of this business, I believe your company is at a striking distance from being among the global majors in the commercial vehicle field with attributes of operational efficiency, cost control, quality and reliability and product innovation," he added.

Chennai-based Ashok Leyland, which sells LCVs like Dost and Partner in India, has presence in over 50 countries. It reported record sale of 174,873 units in 2017-18, its highest ever dispatch in a financial year. "It is remarkable that the largest volume growth in the domestic truck sales is from the northern region outpacing our traditional southern stronghold where we continue to be market leaders," Hinduja said. The company achieved revenue of 26,248 crore and a record profit of 1,563 crore in 2017-18.

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