Ashok Leyland net soars 33.9%

Ashok Leyland on Thursday reported a 33.93 per cent increase in net profit to Rs 298.2 crore for the quarter ended March 2011.

The company had reported a net profit of Rs 222.7 crore for the fourth quarter last financial year, Ashok Leyland said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

The company’s net sales rose to Rs 3,828.5 crore in the quarter ended March, from Rs 2,939 crore in the same period last financial year.

The company’s board, which met on Thursday, has recommended a dividend of Rs 2 per share (200 per cent) of Re 1 face value for the full financial year. In the year ended March, the company has posted a net profit of Rs 631.29 crore, up 49 per cent from Rs 423.67 crore in the previous financial year.

Net sales rose to Rs 11,117.7 crore from Rs 7,244.71 crore in the previous financial year.

Shares of Ashok Leyland were being quoted at Rs 49.50 apiece on the BSE in late afternoon trade on Thursday, up 6.11 per cent from their previous close.

The company plans to invest Rs 800-Rs 1,000 crore this year on capex and joint ventures.“Our capex for this year will be Rs 800 crore to Rs 1,000 crore. The investments will be equally spread between our own operations and in joint ventures,” said K Sridharan, chief financial officer. Last year it was Rs 1,000 crore.“The proposed investment will be funded from internal resources as well as debt funds to the tune of Rs 500 crore. We are looking at various options for debt. It could be external commercial borrowings, perpetual bonds, plain vanilla debentures” he added.

Managing Director Vinod K Dasari said the company’s target for the current financial year was 110,000 units. Last year Ashok Leyland sold 93,337 units.