Dalmia to invest Rs1400 cr to expand capacity

Dalmia to invest Rs1400 cr to expand capacity

By Reuters

New Delhi: Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd plans to invest Rs14 billion to more-than-double its capacity to 8 million tonnes by March 2009, a senior company official said on 29 October.

Dalmia’s present capacity is 3.5 million tonnes. “We are seeing a very healthy demand-growth environment," managing director Puneet Dalmia told analysts conference call.

Dalmia plans to raise Rs9 billion in debt and the remaining from internal accruals to fund the expansion plans. The company said the capacity addition will come up at its green field plants in Kadapa (Andhra Pradesh), to be commissioned by September 2008, and its Ariyalur plant (Tamil Nadu), to be commissioned by March 2009.

Puneet Dalmia told analysts that the company witnessed challenges in pricing in its sugar business. The contribution of sugar to Dalmia’s gross sales fell to 15% in 2006/07 from 29% in the year ago period, its annual report showed.

Dalmia Cement plans to acquire 21% stake in OCL India Ltd by merging Dalmia’s subsidiary, Dalmia Cement (Meghlaya) Ltd, into the cement and refractory business of OCL. OCL is spinning off its steel and real estate business, Dalmia said, adding it will acquire the stake after the reorganisation process was complete.