May. 29, 2020
> Coromandel plans to invest 4 billion rupees this fiscal year
> Shares have outperformed the benchmark as farm outlook bright
Coromandel International Ltd., an Indian maker of fertilizers and pesticides, will probably delay its planned investment as factories slowly reopen from a nationwide lockdown to contain the coronavirus outbreak.
“There could be a little bit of a push out of our capex given the Covid situation,” Chief Financial Officer Jayashree Satagopan said in an earnings call on Wednesday. “The first focus is going to be to ensure that our operations are fully functioning, all the critical essential capex will be carried out, some of them might be still lower by a quarter or so.”
The company expects to spend about 4 billion rupees ($53 million) to boost capacity in the year started April 1, and the amount will be roughly unchanged for the next two years. Coromandel’s shares have outperformed the benchmark stock index over the past year as agriculture is set to be a relative bright spot in an economy hurtling toward its first contraction in decades.
Rice and wheat output is poised to climb to a record in India. Farmers grow rice, pulses, cotton, sugar cane and soybeans on over 106 million hectares in the monsoon season that starts in June, according to the farm ministry.