SAM PANTHAKY / AFP
Essar Groupâ€™s plans depend on Prime Minister Manmohan Singhâ€™s ability.
Jurnas.com | ESSAR Group, owned by billionaire brothers Shashi and Ravi Ruia, is targeting $35 billion in revenue in three years as it taps demand for infrastructure in Asia’s third-largest economy.
Sales may rise 30 percent by 2015 from $27 billion in the year ended March 31, Chief Executive Officer Prashant Ruia said in an interview in Mumbai. The group also plans to exit the telecommunications business and sell stakes in a U.S. steel unit and a business process outsourcing company, he said.
Essar Group’s plans depend on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s ability to revive construction of roads, ports and power plants needed to spur an economy expanding at the slowest pace in almost a decade. Increased spending in infrastructure may enable Essar, which invested $18 billion in adding capacity since 2008, to widen profit margins, Ruia said.
“Over the next two to three years, we are focusing on sweating the assets which will result in a significant volume and margin growth,” Ruia, 43, said in his Mumbai headquarters. “With no major capital expenditure planned, these companies will have significant free cash flows to redeploy.”
Essar’s investments have come at a cost lower than the industry average, leaving the group with less debt than competitors with similar expansion plans, Ruia said. The total debt at Essar Energy Plc, Essar Oil Ltd. (ESOIL) and Essar Steel Ltd. stood at $13 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Bloomberg