1. Indian battery maker Exide Industries misses Q3 profit view on higher costs

Indian battery maker Exide Industries misses Q3 profit view on higher costs

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2 min read • Updated: January 24, 2024, 4:13 PM

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Summary

Exide's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) margin declined marginally to 11.5% from 11.8% a year earlier

BENGALURU, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Indian battery maker Exide Industries reported a smaller-than-expected rise in quarterly profit on Wednesday as higher input costs ate into earnings, despite strong demand from the automobile sector.

Net profit after tax rose 7.7% to ₹240 cr in the third quarter to Dec. 31, but missed analysts' estimate of ₹262 cr, according to LSEG data.

Raw material costs climbed 11.6%, increasing total expenses by 13%, even though prices of key input lithium carbonate fell. The company did not specify which material costs increased.

As a result, Exide's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) margin declined marginally to 11.5% from 11.8% a year earlier.

"Input cost inflationary pressures have started easing, which coupled with our cost optimisation initiatives is expected to support margins," CEO and MD Subir Chakraborty said in a statement.

Demand for batteries increased from the automobile industry as vehicle production rose in the October-December period. That helped Exide log a 12.6% growth in revenue - the sharpest since the September 2022 quarter - to ₹3841 cr

The automobile industry is key to Exide's earnings, accounting for more than two-thirds of its revenue. Rival battery maker Amara Raja Energy & Mobility will report its third-quarter results next week.