NEW DELHI: India’s largest conglomerate—Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL)—announced on Thursday that it has seen an over 30 per cent increase in its first quarter consolidated net profit at Rs 13,248 crore. This 30.6 per cent rise year-on-year has been powered by a stake sale to BP Plc and the group’s newest and most lucrative unit—Reliance Jio Infocomm.
RIL had, during the quarter, received a one-time game of Rs 4,966 crore from the sale of a 49 per cent stake in its fuel retailing venture to BP Plc.
Combined with this, Reliance Jio’s net profit soared by a whopping 183 per cent y-o-y to hit Rs 2,520 crore during the quarter powered by a steady growth in subscriber base and, consequently, revenues. Average Revenue Per User (ARPU)—a key measure of profitability for telecom firms—rose to Rs 140.3 during the quarter, which, while much lower than the Rs 157 achieved by rival Bharti Airtel, is nevertheless a sharp increase from last year’s levels.
Jio’s revenue from operations stood at Rs 16,557 crore, up 33.7 per cent compared to the same period of the previous year while EBITDA margins also grew from 37.8 per cent last year to 44 per in Q1FY21.
On the other hand, the company’s bread-and-butter petrochemicals business also managed to post positive profit growth despite the pandemic and its impact on the oil sector which has led to tanking revenues.
According to RIL, it operated its refining and petrochemical business at 90 per cent capacity during the lockdown and recorded revenues of Rs 52,263 crore in the segment. The petrochemical business saw a 33 per cent fall in revenue while the refining and marketing unit recorded a 54.1 per cent decline in sales.
“The severe demand destruction due to global lockdowns impacted our hydrocarbons business but the flexibility in our operations enabled us to operate at near normal levels and deliver industryleading results. Our consumer facing businesses became the life-line for individuals and businesses with our Retail and Jio teams working hard to ensure millions got essential goods and services through the lockdown,” said Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director, RIL.