After a decade in notebooks and stationeries, ITC is entering the hinterlands such as Tier-II cities with a new mass brand Saathi. It is testing it in eight states and plans to expand to the rest of the country in 12-18 months.
ITC has dipped 2% to Rs 355 on the BSE, with the stock falling on profit booking after recent upmove. The stock opened at Rs 362 and hit a low of Rs 354 so far. A combined 4.1 million shares changed hands on the counter till 1125 hours on the BSE and NSE.
Diversified conglomerate ITC has reported a 16.3 per cent jump in net profit at Rs 2,385.34 crore for the quarter ended December 2013, against Rs 2,051.85 crore in the year-ago period. Net sales rose 13.1 per cent to Rs 8,623.11 crore.
London-headquartered British American Tobacco (BAT), which holds about 30 per cent stake in ITC, might not increase its equity holding when the Indian government sells its 11.3 per cent stake in the Kolkata-based cigarettes-to-hotels group, currently held
ITC is likely to increase the prices of some of its cigarette brands by up to 15 per cent. While the company is yet to raise the prices officially, it appears dealers and retailers have already been informed of the move.
In the past two months ITC's stock price has corrected by close to 10% and the stock has underperformed the broader market (the Sensex has risen by 6% and the BSE FMCG Index has marginally dropped by 4% in the same period).
ITC reported Adj PAT of Rs21bn on the back of 15.9% EBIT growth in Cigarettes even as Hotels and Paperboard businesses disappointed, resulting in Non‐cigarette business EBIT decline of 5% YoY, mainly led by 58% decline in losses in the FMCG