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HCL Technologies Profit Up 73 Per Cent

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HCL Technologies Ltd, India's fourth-biggest software services provider, beat analysts' estimates with a 73 per cent rise in quarterly profit after winning orders and reducing staff for the second quarter in a row.

Net profit rose to Rs 1,040 crore in its fiscal third-quarter ended 31 March from Rs 600 crore in the year-earlier period, said HCL Technologies, whose customers include Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia Oyj.

The result compared with the average forecast of 9.35 billion rupees in a survey of 16 analysts by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. HCL follows a July-June fiscal year.

It was also much faster than a 3 per cent rise in quarterly profit at larger rival Infosys Ltd, which has been losing market share to the likes of HCL and industry leader Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. Shares of Infosys plunged 21 per cent on Friday after it issued lower-than-expected revenue guidance.

TCS is due to report March quarter results later on Wednesday.

During the quarter, HCL added 37 customers. The company reduced 791 staff, taking the total to 84,403 from 85,194 at the end of the December quarter, maintaining tight control of headcount after shedding jobs in the previous quarter as well.

The future of the IT industry lies in transforming traditional outsourcing into higher-value services that solve business problems with technology innovations, Vice Chairman Vineet Nayar said in a statement.

Exports in India's $108 billion IT outsourcing industry rose 10.2 per cent in the fiscal year that ended in March, according to the National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom). The industry group expects export growth of 12 to 14 per cent in the fiscal year that started this month.