Tata Coffee India posted higher first quarter profit due to increased net sales

Tata Coffee India reported a more than 5% increase in first-quarter profit on Wednesday, thanks to increased net sales in its tea plantation and instant coffee businesses.

Net profit attributable to coffee processor shareholders increased to 474.8 million rupees ($5.8 million) in the quarter ended June 30, while revenue from operations rose nearly 6% to 7.01 billion rupees.

“Tea plantation performance was strong during the quarter, thanks to increased production and lower production costs,” said managing director Chacko P Thomas.

Several coffee processors, including Tata Coffee, said in recent months that demand from restaurants, cafes and offices was increasing as people were going out more.

Tata Coffee’s share exported to more than 40 countries rose 1.2%.

The company, which also supplies chain stores in a joint venture between Starbucks and parent company Tata Consumer Products, said revenue from its value-added products business was up 3% from a year earlier.

This segment accounts for nearly 82% of the company’s total revenue and includes the manufacture and sale of roasted, ground and instant coffee products.

Last month, Reuters reported that Starbucks was changing its strategy in India, changing prices and expanding into smaller cities, amid fierce competition from local startups.

However, Tata Coffee’s total expenses increased by more than 8%, pushing its earnings before interest margin, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) down to 16.73% from 17.61% in the previous year.

The company says lower bag volumes and higher input costs impact the performance of its unit, Eight O’clock Coffee.

Tata Consumer Products will publish the results next week. ($1 = 82.1075 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Varun Vyas in Bengaluru; Writing by Janane Venkatraman)

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