Our Bureau

Kolkata, April 12

THE BM Khaitan Group has offloaded approximately nine per cent of its stake in their group company, Kilburn Engineering Ltd, which has witnessed a turnaround during the last six months.

As on December 31, 2004, the Khaitans held almost 66 per cent in the company. And by the end of the next quarter it dropped to approximately 57 per cent. Mr Deepak Khaitan, Chairman of Kilburn Engineering, confirmed that the family had divested the stake to some investors.

He was, however, not willing to disclose the identity of these investors. He merely stated that the move was aimed at following the SEBI (Securities & Exchanges Board of India) guidelines. The market regulator has asked all promoters to reduce stakes in their respective companies to around 55 per cent.

Regarding the price, he said, it was a little above the then market price of the scrip at the bourses. Mr Khaitan was addressing a press conference on Monday where he talked in detail about the turnaround of Kilburn Engineering.

The company was reported to the BIFR (Board for Industrial & Financial Reconstruction) in 2000 but came out of its net, last year. Kilburn Engineering follows an October-September accounting year.

For the half-year period ended October-March 31, 2004-05, the company recorded a gross turnover of Rs 27.32 crore against the Rs 15.77 crore registered in the corresponding period of 2003-04. From a net loss of Rs 11.58 crore in the half year of 2003-04, Kilburn registered a net profit of Rs 3.74 crore in the first half year of the current accounting period.

In February 2004, the company sold off a property in Baroda for Rs 11 crore. Subsequently, it opted for a one time settlement with financial institutions and paid off Rs 16 crore.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated April 13, 2005)
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