NEW DELHI: Diversified conglomerate ITC today reported an over 10 per cent rise in net profit at Rs 2,635 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, 2014, as it continued to witness muted growth in cigarettes business.
The Kolkata-headquartered firm had posted a profit of Rs 2,385.34 crore in the corresponding period a year earlier.
Net sales increased by marginal 2.05 per cent to Rs 8,800.22 crore as against Rs 8,623.11 crore in the corresponding quarter last year, ITC said in a BSE filing.
Earnings from the company's FMCG business, including cigarettes, increased by 4.23 per cent to Rs 6,456.06 crore while that of non-FMCG business grew by 0.31 per cent to Rs 9,582.95 crore.
During the quarter under review, revenue from cigarettes grew by 0.62 per cent to Rs 4,141.94 crore, while that from FMCG business excluding cigarettes went up by 11.37 per cent to Rs 2,314.12 crore.
"The combined impact of the sharp increase in excise duty and VAT is exerting unprecedented pressure on legal industry sales volumes. Besides adversely impacting the performance of the legal cigarette industry, this has led to sub-optimisation of the revenue potential from the tobacco sector," ITC said in a statement.
Revenue from hospitality business increased by 4.69 per cent to Rs 330.26 crore.
"The hotels industry continued to be impacted by a weak pricing scenario in the backdrop of excessive room inventory in key domestic markets," ITC said.
During the quarter, revenue from agri-business declined by 10.55 per cent to Rs 1,597.86 crore. Revenue from paperboards, paper and packaging business fell by 4.66 per cent to Rs 1,198.77 crore.
ITC attributed decline in agri business revenue to lack of trading opportunities in Soya.
"Agri business segment revenue de-grew by 10.6 per cent primarily due to lack of trading opportunities in Soya due to higher crop output in the USA, Brazil and Argentina," the company said.
Shares of ITC were trading at Rs 354.85 apiece on the BSE in afternoon trade, down 4.40 per cent from its previous close.