Despite the dip in net profit in the first quarter of the current year, Gateway Distriparks expects a better year due to the commissioning of two new container freight stations — at Navi Mumbai and Kochi.

For the first quarter of 2012-13, Gateway Distriparks achieved a turnover of Rs 55.80 crore (against Rs 61 crore in the same period last year) and a net profit of Rs 18 crore (Rs 22.3 crore) on standalone basis.

Analysts have attributed the fall to the company's “aggressive pricing” strategy — warehousing throughput was 65,384 TEUs compared with the previous two-quarter-average of 50,800 TEUs.

The company is expected to ramp up its CFS capacity to 560,000 TEUs in the current financial year with the resumption of full operations at Punjab Conware CFS. Its current capacity stands at 516,000 TEUs.

Construction of the building of Punjab Conware CFS has begun and partial operations from the facility will commence by November-end. The facility will be fully operational towards the year-end.

The Kochi CFS has also commenced partial operations (on wheel operations) and is likely to commence full-fledged operations on completion of the construction of warehouse, which is expected to happen next month.

“The ‘container freight station’ segment is a cash cow for the company and it generated average free cash flow of Rs 85 crore a year during 2009-11,” notes an analytical report of Edelweiss Securities.

Gateway Distriparks is broadly divided into three — CFS, container rail (through Gateway Rail Freight Ltd) and cold storage (Snowman Logistics). The company operates container freight stations at Navi Mumbai, Chennai, Visakhapatnam and (soon in) Kochi. It also operates Inland Container Depots (ICD) at Garhi (Haryana), Sahnewal (Ludhiana), Kalamboli (Mumbai) and a new ICD at Asaoti (Fardibad, to be operational in the current year).

In 2011-12, Gateway Distriparks achieved a turnover of Rs 817 crore (consolidated) on which it made a net profit of Rs 132 crore. Each share earned Rs 12.20.

On the BSE on August 17, the Gateway Distripark share closed at Rs 135.75.

mramesh@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on August 19, 2012)
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