Suzlon back in 'growth phase'

Indian wind turbine maker Suzlon returned to profit at the EBITDA level for the first time in seven quarters, in its fourth-quarter results published Friday.

EBITDA was 3.28bn rupees ($550m), an improvement of 9.23bn rupees year-on-year, on revenues that were up 54% to 65.8bn rupees.

The return to profits reflected stronger profitability at Senvion, the company’s Germany-based subsidiary (formerly known as REpower), where the group reported a ~26% increase in EBIT despite ~19% decline in revenues – as well as the benefits of restructuring.

Suzlon, the world's fifth largest wind turbine maker with Senvion on its books, noted that it has achieved a 31% reduction in fixed-operating expenditure since its 2012 fiscal year. The group also claims to have achieved its restructuring goals at Senvio, with savings significantly exceeding the initial target.

Suzlon’s fiscal-year 2014 saw the company make “significant progress”, says chairman Tulsi Tanti, and the group is “now transitioning from a restructuring mode to a growth phase”.

Tanti expects 40% growth for the global wind market in the year ahead, and significant growth and momentum in India, thanks to the re-instatement of the Generation Based Incentive, the ready availability of finance, and the perceived stability of the incoming government.

Suzlon’s priorities over the next 12 months will be “ramping up volumes, improving business efficiency and rebalancing our capital structure”, Tanti says.

“With innovations in technology and solutions, we remain competitive and well positioned in all the key markets for onshore and offshore WTGs."

Suzlon’s consolidated order book stands at 5.3GW – worth 416.4bn rupees.

Many of Suzlon’s financial issues also appear to be receding.

Kirti Vagadia, group head of finance, says: "On the FCCB front, we have concluded our discussions with the ad-hoc committee of bondholders. The Board has approved cashless restructuring of its Foreign Currency Convertible Bonds (FCCBs) and the new restructured FCCBs will come up for maturity in July 2019."