Top Challengers 2021
COVID-19 has changed the world irrevocably in every way – how we live, work, connect with each other and conduct our business. The concept of work from home has been adopted by most service providers; the supply chain has changed; and more automation has been instituted in most manufacturing facilities.
Though any change is uncomfortable (at least initially) leading to challenges, India Inc has been growing consistently. If the upward movement of benchmark indices is any indication, it appears earning capabilities have hardly been impacted. Rather, the way the primary market has been buzzing, many privately owned companies have opted to get listed on the bourses.
COVID-19 has changed the world irrevocably in every way – how we live, work, connect with each other and conduct our business. The concept of work from home has been adopted by most service providers; the supply chain has changed; and more automation has been instituted in most manufacturing facilities. Though any change is uncomfortable (at least initially) leading to challenges, India Inc has been growing consistently. If the upward movement of benchmark indices is any indication, it appears earning capabilities have hardly been impacted. Rather, the way the primary market has been buzzing, many privately owned companies have opted to get listed on the bourses. If we examine the performance of India Inc, in FY20 only the last quarter was affected by the pandemic-led lockdowns and restrictions. However, FY21 as a whole had to undergo different levels of lockdowns on the back of the first and second waves. However, despite all the challenges, some companies managed significant growth on the operational and financial fronts. At CW, we are recognising their efforts by ranking the top performers. v We have analysed companies from the universe of construction and contracting, engineering, metals, building materials and the cement sector to honour those who have been able to overcome the hurdles they faced on the macro and micro fronts. We have followed a rigorous method by focusing on parameters such as net sales, profit before depreciation, interest and taxes (PBDIT) and net profit. While sales figures are important as they reflect how the demand for products or services is moving, PBDIT figures guide us on how the company is doing at the operational level and its efficiency. As for net profit, it clearly shows how much is left for shareholders. Further, in the context of the current series of defaults on payment by a few companies, we have also closely observed if companies analysed by us have risked their debt profile or leveraged too much; hence, parameters like long-term and short-term borrowings have been examined. With such comprehensive analysis, companies that have managed to show ability to grow are true challengers showing their mettle in a difficult economic environment. We have selected companies that have shown improvement in at least two of the parameters mentioned above: net sales, PBDIT and net profit. For instance, if a company has managed to show an increase in sales but failed to show improvement in PBDIT and net profit, it has not been considered. Further, to define the major league of challengers, we have only considered companies with a market capitalisation of over Rs 500 crore and companies with FY20 sales of more than Rs 500 crore. This is to ensure the companies managed to post strong growth in a higher base. There are a few companies who posted losses in FY21 but we ensured that losses reduced compared to FY20. Owing to the pandemic, a few companies did not conducted their annual general meetings; we have sourced data from the annual figures announced by them in the March 2021 results. We have made a few adjustments; for example, for companies with fiscal closing other than March 2021, we considered the financial performances of the trailing four quarters. Companies that have not yet announced their March 2021 quarter results have not been considered. (A few companies had not announced their Q4FY21 results even till the second week of July 2021). Apart from this, a few organisations chose not to participate in this process and hence do not figure in the list. We provided a weighted average to three parameters: 40 per cent to sales, being a prime growth driver, and 30 per cent each to PBDIT and profit after tax (PAT). After ranking the companies on growth in percentage terms (FY21 over FY20), the rankings were provided with weightages. This process helped us rationalise the ranking process and all players were rated on similar ground. In some cases, we offered the selection panel the right to veto by adhering to qualitative factors. The final list is an extensive one and the panel has taken into account almost all aspects that needed to be considered. We have chosen not to rank them as the companies belong to diverse sectors and the purpose was to select those who have braved the odds. Here’s a list and the exclusive interviews of CW’S TOP CHALLENGERS 2021 and their strategies in making it to our list. Sorab Agarwal, Executive Director, ACE Ltd Sanjay Gupta, Chairman & Managing Director, APL Apollo Tubes Ltd MV Rajasekhar, Chairman & Managing Director (I/C), Director (Mining & Construction), Director (Human Resources) (I/C), BEML Ltd Dr Jairam Varadaraj, Managing Director, Elgi Equipments Ltd Harendra Singh, Chairman and Managing Director, HG Infra Engineering Ltd Vijay Sharma, Director, Jindal Stainless Dr Raghavpat Singhania, Managing Director, JK Cement Ltd Yaswant Mishra, President (Corporate) & CFO, Mangalam Cement Prem Shanker, CEO, Ramco Industries Ltd YR Nagaraja, Managing Director, Ramky Infrastructure Ltd Anand Reddy, Managing Director, Sagar Cements Ltd Abhishek Somany, Managing Director & CEO, Somany Ceramics Ltd Vamsi Krishna Gaddam, Joint Managing Director, Visaka Industries Ltd