Image: Abhishek Chinnappa / Reuters
As part of the government’s disinvestment drive, Indian defence public sector enterprise Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is readying plans for listing on the Indian bourses, which could happen in the next financial year 2017-18. HAL, the maker of India's Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas, is looking at offloading 3.615 crore equity shares that would represent around 10 percent of its paid-up equity capital.
Addressing the media at the Aero India 2017 event in Bengaluru, HAL chairman and managing director T Suvarna Raju said, “Progress has been made towards the disinvestment with the identification of Book Running Lead Managers (BRLMs). We are updating ourselves with the DRHP, which is ready.” The valuation of the IPO would be done by the BRLMs and other financial experts.
Last year, HAL contributed over Rs 5,000 crore to the government exchequer as part of a share buyback offer. Around 12.5 crore shares were traded as part of the buyback process, amounting to Rs 4,284 crore. This incurred a buyback tax of Rs 981 crore. The share buyback represented about 25 percent of the company’s paid-up equity capital.
In FY15-16, HAL reported a turnover of Rs 16,736 crore, registering a growth of 7.14 percent over the previous year. Its profit before tax (PBT) stood at Rs 3,288 crore. The company is targeting a turnover of Rs 17,100 crore for the financial year ending March 31, 2017. “At the end of January, our revenues stood at Rs 10,086 core and profit was Rs 1,621 crore,” added Raju.
So far, HAL has handed over three indigenously produced Tejas aircraft to the Indian Air Force and has firm orders to produce 40 more aircraft, which will be delivered by FY19-20. Besides, it also has firm orders for the Dornier 228 aircraft (18) and the Dhruv helicopter (23). “We have concluded negotiations for 73 Advance Light Helicopters to the services. We expect a contract to be signed in the next few days,” said Raju. Furthermore, the Indian Air Force and Indian Army have respectively placed orders of 10 and 5 of HAL’s indigenously developed Light Combat Helicopters.
At the 11th edition of Aero India, HAL showcased its latest product: The Indian Multi Role Helicopter. This would be used for tactical troop transport, casualty evacuation, combat search and rescue operations, for VIP and VVIP transport, and air ambulance services.