Wheels India to invest Rs 200 cr to ramp up production

Wheels India has earmarked an investment of Rs 200 crore as capex this year as part of gradually ramping up of production in commercial vehicles, tractor, aluminum wheels and windmills machining segments. Last year, its capex was Rs 143 crore.

“Cast aluminum is looking very strong with the first supplies to the first OEM taking place this month. We will start ramping this up with a second customer in Q3 of this year,” said Srivats Ram, MD, Wheels India, after talking about the performance of the company.

Wheels India has registered a net profit of Rs 65.2 crore for the year ended March 31, 2023 compared to Rs 79.8 crore reported during the same period in the previous year. Revenues for the year ended March 31, 2023 went up 18% to Rs 4332.1 crore against Rs 3686.7 crore in the year ended March 31, 2022. The Board of Wheels India has recommended a final dividend of Rs 3.97 per share. The company had in January 2023 declared an interim dividend of Rs 3 per share for the FY 2022-23.

The company’s net profit was Rs 24.8 crore in Q4 ended March 31, 2023, against Rs 27.9 crore registered in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. Revenues for Q4 ended March 31, 2023 went up 6 per cent to Rs 1,169.2 crore compared to Rs 1101.3 crore registered in the Q4 ended March 31, 2022.

Noting that the company had registered a significant growth in air suspension division during FY 2023, he said the CV and earth mover wheel business had also performed well in FY23. “Machining of large castings which was commissioned in September 2022 was ramped-up towards the end of FY 2023,” he added.

Air Suspension had reached close to 10 per cent of the company’s overall revenues.“It will remain strong. The windmill business will grow from strength to strength,” he said.

On the outlook, Srivats said, “Despite the uncertain global environment, exports are showing positive signs. We are confident that strong relationship with customers will ensure export growth this year.”

The company’s exports looked up in Q4 of last year, he said, adding “we expect this trend to continue into this year. We are looking at double-digit growth to come back in our exports this year, though there is uncertainty in the overall global environment. We are building on our existing relationships with global customers and getting into new platforms. Overall this year looks promising on the exports front.”

On the domestic market, Srivats noted “we have made reasonable inroads in the aftermarket segment and have reached close to 5% share to our overall business. It is the first time it has reached such a level. There is a certain amount of positivity in the domestic market. CV was quite strong in Q4 and we are continuing to see some momentum this year. Government investment in infra should give a fillip in this segment.”