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Saturday, March 28, 2009

Outlook and future prospects of clariant chemicals

Scripscan:Clariant chemicals ltd
Traded in:Nse-bse

Story:India’s leading dyestuff manufacturer, Clariant Chemicals, posted almost nil net profit for the December ‘08 quarter. Nevertheless, a generous dividend payout announced by its board to pay dividend of Rs 19 per share, which translates to a handsome dividend yield of 10.2%, considering Friday’s closing price of the Clariant scrip.In the last couple of years, the company had distributed more than 100% of its book profits by way of dividends to its shareholders. However, considering the strong profit growth reported by the company during the year ‘08, the dividend payout ratio is likely to remain below 100% this year. For the entire year ‘08, the company posted a 127% higher net profit at Rs 67 crore on a consolidated basis.Similar to other chemical companies, the December ‘08 quarter results of the company were marred by the economic slowdown, crash in commodity prices and the credit squeeze. The company posted an 8% drop in net sales to Rs 201 crore. The operating margins and other income, too, deteriorated marginally, resulting in an 18% fall in PBDIT at Rs 18.3 crore.The company wrote off Rs 7.3 crore towards impairment of assets and another Rs 0.5 crore towards VRS expenditure. These extraordinary write-offs resulted in the company’s pretax profit falling 64% below year-ago levels. As the company wrote off another Rs 2.5 crore towards prior period taxes, the net profit stood 94% down at just Rs 0.66 crore.The problems of economic slowdown were faced by all the company’s business segments including intermediates and colorants, dyes and specialty chemicals, and master batches. The losses in the intermediates business increased, while the profits nearly halved in the dyes segment.The December ‘08 quarter was an exceptionally bad quarter for the chemical industry due to a slowdown in demand and falling prices. However, the March ‘09 quarter is expected to be better with stable prices and demand improving for the chemical industry. Clariant is expected to continue doing well in the coming months, while the healthy dividends will keep its scrip afloat.

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