Monday, February 26, 2024

Significant rise in gap between standalone, consolidated net profit of Reliance Industries

The gap between Reliance Industries Ltd’s standalone and consolidated net profit has more than doubled to ₹22,400 crore in the last couple of years, as the retail and telecom businesses housed in separate subsidiaries saw significant growth

The gap between Reliance Industries Ltd’s standalone and consolidated net profit has more than doubled to ₹22,400 crore in the last couple of years, as the retail and telecom businesses housed in separate subsidiaries saw significant growth

The gap between Reliance Industries Ltd’s standalone and consolidated net profit has more than doubled to ₹22,400 crore in the last couple of years, as the retail and telecom businesses housed in separate subsidiaries saw significant growth, a report said.

“The gap between Reliance’s standalone and consolidated profit after tax (PAT) has increased significantly — from ₹8,400 crore in FY20 (April 2019 to March 2020) to ₹22,400 crore in FY23, as telecom and retail have ramped up,” JP Morgan said in a note that used data from the firm’s annual reports to reconcile the difference between the two reported profit numbers.

Reliance reported a standalone net profit of ₹30,902 crore in 2019-20 fiscal year, which grew to ₹44,205 crore in 2022-23 fiscal. Consolidated net profit soared from ₹39,354 crore in FY20 to ₹66,702 crore in FY23.

As many as 335 individual standalone companies/associates/joint ventures accounted for the difference between Reliance’s consolidated and standalone PAT for the year FY23. Around 40% of these (133) reported profits for the year.

This breadth of companies is down from 498, which were part of consolidated accounts in FY20.

“These look like large numbers, but several standalone subsidiary companies are part of a single business group / operation (such as for US shale, or the multiple ethane shipping JVs),” it said.

Reliance’s telecom and retail subsidiaries/associates/JV accounted for around 89% of the gap between consolidated and standalone profits (pre-minority / eliminations) in FY23 — but that still leaves about $ 400 million in net profits from other businesses.

Dwelling into the annual reports, JP Morgan said there is a sharp increase in profitability of group companies that seem to be in the business of trading crude/product/petchem/ethane in FY23 (from ₹170 crore in FY22 to ₹1,460 crore).

“This could be on account of widened cracks, crude discounts and global supply chain disruptions,” the report said.

The demerged petcoke gasifiers company reported PAT of ₹3,300 crore — a relatively low return on the estimated capex for the project, it said, adding Reliance’s fuel retailing JV with BP has swung into a large loss in FY23 (loss of ₹910 crore compared to a profit of ₹330 crore in the previous year) — likely on account of high crude and capped retail prices.

Companies part of the recently acquired REC solar group have reported total losses of ₹280 crore in FY23.

Other businesses that suffered large losses in FY23 included Saavn (online music; loss of ₹1,060 crore) due to a large write-off, Sterling and Wilson (Solar, loss of ₹470 crore), Reliance Brands (loss of ₹180 crore), Reliance Infratel (loss of ₹150 crore) and skyTran (urban mobility, loss of ₹150 crore) amongst others.

“We count close to 80 acquisitions and investments Reliance has made over the last 6 years in a range of businesses (estimated cost about $5 billion) – some in new/nascent technologies as well. The consolidated accounts suggest few currently make money. There could be a minor surprise in earnings if any of these turn,” it added.

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