Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Caparo alive and well, avers Lord Paul

S Kalyana Ramanathan / London July 6, 2010

Caparo is alive and well, chairman Lord Swraj Paul said in a statement today after questions were raised about the financial health of the UK-based engineering conglomerate.

The group issued a statement clarifying its financial health. It said the reports in the UK media questioning its financial health were based on 2008 calendar year results and its current state had improved significantly.

“Cash flow forecasts to the end of December 2010 indicated the group would be able to trade within its existing ‘and expected’ loan facilities, Caparo said, though it admitted there was little room for manoeuvre,” the Daily Mail had said in its report yesterday. Business Standard had reported this based on the Daily Mail report.

Angad Paul, Caparo’s chief executive, said: “Is it necessary to remind anyone that from August to December 2008, the financial sector suffered a ‘blood bath’, which then led to the most rapid downturn in manufacturing industry.”

“Indeed it is a credit to Caparo’s management that we exited that year with a relatively small loss. We should not forget that this was a time when the world’s banks failed and many much larger companies were perceived to be bankrupt.”

He said 2009 was an extremely difficult year, but now, more than half way into 2010, the group expected to produce revenues across its operations ahead of 2007.

“In India alone, we will achieve revenue of Rs 1,400 crore in 2010 rising to Rs 2,000 crore plus in 2011, slightly less than predicted, but I remain bullish that Rs 3,000 crore will be achieved in 2012. Throughout the last 18 months we have continued to enjoy the support of our stakeholders, and I am pleased to say that we have now returned to profitability. Let me assure all of our team, our customers and suppliers that we are on course and will continue to go from strength to strength,” he said.

Caparo’s financial statements for 2009 are not ready. The UK-based group consolidates its India operations where the accounts are prepared on a financial year basis (ending March).

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