Agrochemical major UPL Ltd. has reported a 95 per cent dip in profits for the quarter ended March 2024 compared to the previous year, due to lower revenues triggered by a dip in global prices.

UPL reported a net profit of ₹40 crore for Q4 FY24 as compared to ₹792 crore in the same period last year. Revenue for the quarter were down 15 per cent at ₹14,078 crore as compared to the previous year’s ₹16,569 crore. EBITDA declined 36 per cent to ₹1,933 crore (₹3,033 crore). The EBITDA margin was down at 13.7 per cent from the previous year’s 18.3 per cent.

For the fiscal 2023-24, UPL reported a net loss of ₹1,200 crore against a profit of ₹3,569 crore in the previous year. Revenues for the year were down 20 per cent at ₹43,098 crore over the previous year’s ₹53,576 crore. EBITDA for FY24 was down by 51 per cent at ₹5,515 crore (₹11,178 crore). FY24 EBITDA margin stood lower at 12.8 per cent over previous year’s 20.9 per cent.

Following the results announcement, UPL scrip gained 6.49 per cent to end at ₹534.35 on the BSE on Monday. The Board of UPL has recommended a dividend of 50 per cent (₹1 on face value of ₹2 each) for the fiscal 2024.

Q4 financial results

“We delivered significantly improved financial results in Q4 versus the two preceding quarters, in spite of the prevailing volatile and challenging market conditions,” said Mike Frank, CEO, UPL Corporation Ltd. “As compared to Q3, volumes recovered well and were in-line with last year, largely led by the strong performance of our high-margin differentiated and sustainable portfolio, which contributed 36 per cent of crop protection revenue versus 29 per cent last year,” he said.

Frank said the pricing pressure is seen abating, while the company expects volumes to pick up largely led by improved demand in key markets such as Brazil, US and India. “As we look ahead to FY25, we expect a return to growth and normalisation in margins driven by the agrochemical market returning to normality. Further, our foremost priority remains to deleverage our balance sheet, which we plan to achieve through operational cash flows, completion of rights issue and pursuing capital raise opportunities within our platforms,” he said.

UPL’s recent product launches such as Evolution, Feroce and Shenzi did exceedingly well with volumes growing by over 50 per cent. Furthermore, Advanta, our global seeds platform, continued to see robust traction delivering revenue growth of 34 per cent and 38 per cent respectively for the quarter, Frank said.

India revenues for UPL were down 16 per cent during the year, while North America witnessed a major decline of 55 per cent. Revenues from Latin America shrunk 21 per cent, while Europe declined 10 per cent during the year. The company registered a 9 per cent growth in its business in the rest of the world.