Hindalco has remained a performer, thanks to its innovative moves and unique products, which it keeps on doing frequently
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With operations spanning over 10 countries 37 operational units and a mammoth 36,000 workforce, Hindalco Industries has been on a growth trajectory generating revenue and profit consistently over the years thereby finding itself among the select group of ‘Fastest Growing Companies’, in India. In recent past, Hindalco has also been featured among the top performers in the BW 500 list of companies.
In FY19, the consolidated revenue of Hindalco went up by 12.7 per cent to touch a record Rs 130,542 crore. One of the key differentiators for the company is an extremely high degree of employee satisfaction with 87 per cent survey score.
Hindalco’s aluminium and copper business in India and Novelis continued to deliver exceptional operational and financial performance over the past several financial years. The major enablers were stable operations, better efficiencies and realisations and supportive macros, especially in the first half of FY19. It (including Utkal) continued to achieve record aluminium and alumina production levels at 1.295 Mt and 2.893 Mt, respectively. All the plants operated at its designed capacities in the last fiscal. Production of aluminium value-added products (excluding wire rods) stood at 321 Kt in FY’19 reflecting, a growth of 5 per cent on a y-o-y basis.
The aluminium jute packaging material was one of the innovative moves by the group during FY19. It combined the properties of aluminium foil and jute to develop a superior packaging material. Aluminium foils are impervious to moisture, bacteria and gases and jute is an environment-friendly natural material with elastic properties. Hindalco has partnered with the National Jute Board to explore applications of this product.
For lithium ion batteries, the group has its own innovative ideas. To address the electric vehicles market, it has developed aluminium foils, which can be used for the packaging of li-ion batteries. The foils are expected to reduce the use of plastic in the manufacturing of Li-ion batteries and increase battery life. Also the innovation continued with bus bodies of aluminum.
Modern buses with aluminum body are several hundred kgs lighter than those built using steel. Hindalco has been working closely with ARAI to develop buses with aluminum bodies, which will help in increasing the carrying capacity and reduce the operating costs due to improved fuel efficiency. In 2018, Birla Copper successfully produced 21 mm and 26 mm copper rods using the Contirod technology supplied by SMS Group, Germany. Being a major supplier to the Indian Railways, it believes these innovative and unique products will help to capitalise the opportunities in building metro/bullet trains and high-speed lines.
As per the group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla: “FY19 was a volatile year for aluminum and copper. The macroeconomic scenario emerging from the US-China trade dispute and the moderation of economic activities in Europe and China resulted in the lackluster growth of the aluminum and copper sectors in CY 2018.” For the local market, Birla said, “Aluminium will continued to grow at over 9 per cent for the second year in a row. The 9.5 per cent growth in FY 2018-19 was driven by the transportation, construction and consumer durables sectors.”