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Indian basmati-rice exporter LT Foods’ first-quarter profit surges on higher prices

BENGALURU, July 28 (Reuters) – India’s LT Foods (LTOL.NS), which sells Daawat basmati rice, reported a 53% surge in quarterly profit on Friday, helped by robust demand for its packaged rice and strong export prices.

The rice producer’s consolidated profit rose to 1.37 billion rupees ($16.7 million) in the quarter ended June 30, from 896.9 million rupees, a year earlier.

Consolidated revenue from operations rose more than 10% to 17.78 billion rupees, spurred by a 24% year-on-year growth in the company’s core basmati and other specialty business.

Its total expenses rose only about 9% in the quarter, which helped boost margins.

LT Foods, which gets 65% of its revenue from exports has benefited from export prices climbing to a five-year high by end-June, driven by tight supplies and the government’s move to raise support prices for the key crop in early June.

India, the world’s biggest exporter of rice, had said in May that it would consider rice shipments only through diplomatic channels, staying the export curbs on the food crop it imposed last year in September to cool domestic prices.

LT Foods’ domestic market share increased by 210 basis points to 29.8% in the quarter, signalling strong demand for the homegrown staple, said Managing Director and CEO Ashwani Arora.

Shares of LT Foods rose as much as 3.9% after results on Friday.

($1 = 82.2375 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Hritam Mukherjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza QR Code

Published Date: July 28, 2023

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