I was thinking about the company from a big picture standpoint and the runway, opportunity size.
Placed in an industry of 10,000cr (only India), growing at 6%. 90%+ is unorganised and seeing a strong shift from unorganised to organised after GST. Current revenues FY17 only 23cr, FY18(upto Oct) 18cr. Market cap ONLY 30cr. Available at roughly 1.3x sales. Makes 30%+ return ratios. This is all when Oxford is not even properly baked in and Indian opportunity size is huge. Middle East can be massive, which is already 30-40% of revenues. Besides, as at Oct2017, had 5-6cr of cash equivalents, no long term debts (all short term and working capital).
Price when posted – INR49.5 (15May2018). Market cap – INR30cr.
Disclaimer: This note is not a research report but assimilation of information available on public domain and it should not be treated as a research report, investment advice or Buy/Hold/Sell recommendation. I am not registered with SEBI under the (Research Analyst) Regulations 2014 and as per clarifications provided by SEBI: “Any person who makes recommendation or offers an opinion concerning securities or public offers only through public media is not required to obtain registration as research analyst under RA Regulations”. It is safe to assume that I might have the company in my portfolio and hence my point of view can be biased. Investors are advised to do their due diligence and consult a qualified financial advisor prior to taking any actual investment or trading decisions.
Had sent this message on 25April2018 to someone who wanted to know what looked good from short to medium term perspective. I thought FirstSource Solutions (FSL) looked interesting then from a medium term (6 month perspective).
Closing price as on 11May2018 – INR70.90.
If you are interested, please respond to this post and I will be more than happy to explain, how we create wealth for our clients, keeping in mind their specific needs. We have specific products for long and short term, completely back by research.
Disclaimer: The above post is only for educational purposes. This is not a research report and it should not be treated as a research report, investment advice or Buy/Hold/Sell recommendation. I am not registered with SEBI under the (Research Analyst) Regulations 2014. Investors are advised to do their due diligence and consult a qualified financial advisor prior to taking any actual investment or trading decisions. Past Performance Is No Guarantee of Future Results.
Margin required (investment) INR60,000. High risk trade to earn 0.8% in 5 days – short Karnataka Bank (KTKBank) 130 Call (last traded price INR0.30) and long Karnataka Bank 140 Call (last traded price INR0.10). Strict stop loss of INR128. April 2018 expiry. 0.8% is after considering an average INR50 per lot option brokerage.
Disclaimer: This is not a research report and it should not be treated as a research report, investment advice or Buy/Hold/Sell recommendation. I am not registered with SEBI under the (Research Analyst) Regulations 2014 and as per clarifications provided by SEBI: “Any person who makes recommendation or offers an opinion concerning securities or public offers only through public media is not required to obtain registration as research analyst under RA Regulations”. Investors are advised to do their due diligence and consult a qualified financial advisor prior to taking any actual investment or trading decisions.
- Vasa Retail ( Vasa ), is a small company that is listed on the NSE SME platform. Mcap of 33cr. CMP INR60. Company recently came up with an IPO in February 2018 raising funds aggregating to INR4.80cr. IPO price INR30 (4000 lot size). It is a company into stationery distribution, offers everything that a person might need in terms of stationery.
- Screener link: https://www.screener.in/company/VASA/
- Company website: https://vasagroup.in/
- Background: Vasa began business from the Gulf in 1967 by Late Bhupendra Vasa, the original promoter. Middle East as a business has thrived since 1970s after the oil surge. Hardik Bhupendra Vasa, the current CMD, joined business in 1997-1998. Hardik Vasa is 42, an engineer who has done the IIM-A accelerated management program. Company was incorporated in October 2017 as a conversion from partnership firm to public limited company. Business was done under partnership firm mode since 1994.
- Branded products: Co has the most prestigious and recognized brand in global education…’University of Oxford’.
- Oxford association: Vasa has exclusive license agreements to make, market, sell, distribute and promote various stationery products under the brand ‘University of Oxford’ in 26 countries including India, SAARC nations, Middle East and North Africa. Agreement is for 10 years, with auto renewal for 5 years and extendable 2044, based on milestone achievements. First agreement was entered on 1 October 2014 only for India and subsequently second one on 10 June 2016 for Middle East and North Africa. Due to commitment to quality and timely delivery, Oxford Limited extended rights to the existing range of stationary products by way of a comfort letter dated 10 March 2016 wherein Oxford has provided comfort to Vasa for renewal of the agreement dated 1 October 2014 for a period of twenty (20) years until December 31, 2044 subject to company achieving milestones as required under the license agreement. This extension of rights till 2044 enables Vasa to further strengthen relationship with Oxford and the brand. This should probably act as a testimony to Oxford’s confidence in Vasa.
- 26 countries: India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Mauritius, Maldives, Nepal, Seychelles, Reunion (South Asia) Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, Oman (Middle East) Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Kenya, Nigeria and Tanzania (North Africa). Basically SAARC nations including India, Middle East and North Africa.
- Why Vasa: Unique differentiator is their experience in stationery since 1970s to forecast demand accurately, understand pulse of consumers. Oxford choosing Vasa is a testimony of their experience and skill. Company spends a lot of time on market research, identifying new trends. Last two years, focus of the company has been in developing innovative product range under the brand of Oxford, entering into arrangements with distributors, tie-up with suppliers and recruiting a sales team. The promoter considers stationery business as FMCG without an expiry date.
- Vasta + Oxford: In addition to marketing and selling products under the ‘University of Oxford’ brand, company also intends to promote and market products under its in house brand ‘VASTA’. Company intends to utilize the existing channels for sourcing products and distribution networks for the ‘VASTA’ brand products so as to create a market for products under the in house brand as well. Growth of ‘VASTA’ brand products market shall provide an alternative range of products to the existing range of products sold under the ‘University of Oxford’ brand to the customer. Company intends to leverage the existing distribution platform and implement effective marketing strategies to deepen our reach in domestic markets for both brands, also ensuring that the same can be interchangeably used. Company also does trading in copier paper and uses this as an entry point to build relationships with distributors.
- Reason for IPOs: working capital related requirements – earlier company used to fulfill orders on made to order basis, but given the experience and expertise in stationery, they decided to now work on demand forecasting – working capital, inventory ready business model. Sellers attach a lot of importance to speedy delivery of products.
- Asset light: Company is only into processing and assembling of stationery. No manufacturing, completely asset light. Functions like a master distributor. Vasa has been sourcing stationary products for sales in domestic and overseas markets since the year 1994. It outsources manufacturing of stationery products to various suppliers based out of India, China, Indonesia and Malaysia which enable Company to adhere to the required specifications and stipulated quality standards for stationary products both under ‘University of Oxford’ as well as for ‘VASTA’.
- Strategy: Vasa Retail has a very focused business model. In India – Oxford and Vasta (own brand). Overseas (mainly Middle East) – Oxford, Vasta and existing business of functioning like aggregators (consolidation of various stationery products), private labels.
- Aggregators: Consolidation, acting like a one stop shop for all brands (Cello, Kangaroo, etc.) and all products based on demand. The trend in Middle East is that sellers like having private labels, so they get it manufactured and use their own branding to sell.
- Indian industry: Operating in India was extremely difficult prior to GST. Unorganised sector had an unfair advantage since there was large scale evasion of taxes. Duties were close to ~40%, which after GST net off all input credits is now ~10%. This has led to a large shift from unorganised to organised, with many unorganised players being unable to cope up. Significant part of the industry is still unorganised. Stationery industry in India is expected to grow at 5.9% CAGR 2017-2026 from USD1.5b in 2017 to USD2.5b in 2026, with a large shift happening from unorganised to organised. Pens form about 31% of the market, expected to grow from USD460m to USD750m over the same period, adding USD58.6m annually (5.6% CAGR). Mid-range stationery segment is expected to grow from USD718.1m to USD1249.8m over the same period (6.4% CAGR).
- Products: Stationery products (Further classify into (i) school and education products; (ii) fine art and hobby products; and (iii) office products) + paper pulp + bag fabric.
- Stationery products: Artistic materials, hobby colors, scholastic colors, scholastic stationery, office products, drawing instrument, writing instruments, office stationery, adhesives, notebooks, office supplies and writing instruments, books, pens, pencils, erasers, files, copier paper, bags and bottles.
- Paper pulp: Procuring paper pulp and selling the same to paper mills.
- Bag fabric: Procuring bag fabric and supplying it to the other bag manufacturers and also using the same for manufacturing our products (school and office bags). These stationery products are essentially used by school going children and offices as a part of their stationery requirements. On the other hand, paper pulp is the key raw material for the manufacturing of wide variety of paper. Bag fabric is not only supplied to other bag manufacturers but is also used by company for manufacturing its bag products.
- Product portfolio: Products portfolio comprises of a wide range of products which are sold under the brand “University of Oxford” as well as under “VASTA”. Products portfolio includes water colour cakes, water tubes, poster colours, wax crayons, oil pastels, plastic crayons, sketch pens, textured papers, silk laid papers, handmade papers, cards and envelopes, pearl finish papers, scales, sharpeners, colour pencils, erasers, engineering boxes, other technical instruments, note books, adhesive mechanical pencils, hi-polymer leads, fountain pen and its ink, water bottles, pencil cases, primary school bags college bag packs, secondary school bags, geometry boxes, canvas rolls, canvas boards, artist water colours, oil sketching pappers, drawing inks, brushes, painting mediums, glass colours fabric colours, powder colours, fabric glue, artist poster colous, white board markers, permanent markers, peal and seal envelop, diaries and computer labels, organizing divider, highlighters, ball pen, gel pens, stamp pads, refills, paint markers, CD markers, carbon papers, glue sticks, gum, copier paper, paper pulp, bag fabric etc.
- SKUs: Offers around 240 products of Oxford currently, to go to 1500 products in future.
- Huge runway for growth: Currently reached 750 outlets in Mumbai (7 distributors), there are close to 18,000 potential outlets. So as such have just scratched the surface. As of now, no where in modern retail. Modern retail presents a big big opportunity. There are 50,000+ modern retail outlets across India.
- Ecommerce: Offers a huge potential. Oxford products are listed on Amazon.
- What makes a brand successful: Success of a product depends on three factors equally – 1. Strong brand 2. Acceptability 3. Maintain price/affordability – Oxford would check all the boxes.
- Pricing strategy: Company plans to keep pricing at low or no premium for Oxford, for basic (economy) standard stationery. If a pen is for 10 rupees in the market of other brand, Oxford would sell the same at 10 or 12, since market perceives the value in such a way. Company plans to keep margins higher for unique/niche products, where the market doesn’t attach a specific value (or price cannot be perceived). Designer pouches, special oil pastels colours, highlighters etc.
- Revenue breakup: roughly 60% is stationery, 40% is paper pulp. Bag fabric is very very marginal. The revenue mix would change towards higher margin stationery products.
- To sum up: strategy in India – sell Oxford and Vasta. Strategy overseas – continue to be aggregators and sellers, sell Vasta and Oxford. The Middle East private labels business, has a potential to turning to Oxford for higher acceptability, margins, given affordability is not a concern. Vasta largely offers an economy level product. India as well, distribution built for Vasta and Oxford can be interchangeably used. Company also plans to gradually convert all Vasta products to Oxford.
- Numbers: 1HFY18 (YTD October 2017) revenues 18cr, PBT 1.35cr and PAT 1cr. FY17 23.55cr, 1.23cr and 0.92cr. Market cap as on 24 March 2018 – INR33cr. Debt – No term loans, all debt is largely working capital LCs, CCs, etc. No long term debts. Company would largely only require working capital loans.
- My view: I would not want to comment on the valuations, but this definitely looks like a unique, asset light, high return ratios play on the branded stationery business. In our opinion, given the low base, company can easily achieve 30%+ growth YoY, for multiple years ahead. INR3cr PAT for FY21 seems easily achievable.
- Company still small in terms of revenues.
- Oxford and Vasta plans may or may not work out – business risk.
- Typical risks associated with SME companies – liquidity is low, lot size is high and others
PS: If you have received the above notes from anywhere else including Whats App, please note they are originally written by me 🙂 Always give due credit, where due.
SecUR Credentials (Securcred), is a small company that is listed on the NSE SME platform. It is a company into background check (BGC) industry. It is India’s first and only listed player in this space. I think the company forms a part of an interesting industry which has a long runway ahead.
Mcap of 120cr. CMP INR238. Company recently came up with an IPO in November 2017 raising funds aggregating to INR30cr. IPO price INR205 (600 lot size).
About SecUR (website + prospectus):
SecUR Credentials is one of India’s largest background check companies with pan-India coverage and operational capabilities in 14 countries. 15 years of management experience and a 300+ workforce has powered our ability to weld innovation with technology and streamline the background screening process. As a result, our services have been integrated into HR systems for over 350 large companies across 30+ industries.
A thought-leader in the background verification space, SecUR verifies half a million resumes each year and that number is only growing. The key to our continued success is in our DNA; which is defined by our passion for business, innovation in products and processes, and customer focus.
Reach: Pan-India reach extending to all 39732 Pin codes
Innovation: Seamless authentication of information across geographies and institutions through innovation in both technology and processes.
Currently, we are an end-to-end screening services provider to various corporates in the country. We are one of the very few India-based BGC companies to be a member of the prestigious US-based National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), APAC Chapter, which is the umbrella body of the largest BGC companies around the globe. We can provide background screening services, for organisations not just in India, but across the globe through our NAPBS connections and have provided our service in countries such as US, UK, Philippines, Srilanka to name a few. Our Company is headquartered in Andheri, Mumbai, with branch offices in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chandigarh. We can cover every PIN code of the country through our intricate hub and spoke model, which multiplies the geographies we cover through the above branch offices.
Prospectus extract on the background of the company:
Our Company was earlier engaged in the business of providing insurance services and human resource solutions provider. During FY 2015 we recorded Nil revenues since our erstwhile promoters were preoccupied in their other ventures. During FY 2016 we received a single order from Reliance Life Insurance Company Limited. They were our single client during FY 2016. On July 26, 2016 our Promoter, Pankaj Vyas, took over the management and control our Company by acquiring then existing 100% paid-up equity share capital of our Company from our erstwhile promoter CRP Risk Management Limited. Post this change our company was transformed into a Company is engaged in the business of Background Screening (also known as BGC – Background Check) and Due Diligence.
Core focus areas:
- Background screening of employees
- On-boarding processes
- Exit Management
- Employee support service
Checks conducted by the company:
- Database and media
- Credit check
- Drug test
- Psychometric test
- India’s first B2C background screening product
- Allows individuals to self-certify their CVs
- Shifts onus of responsibililty of clean resumes from employer to employee
- Due diligence for Senior Management hires
- Due diligence for partners / suppliers
- Due diligence for investments
- KYC services
- Wide Range of Services
- National player, with global footprint
- Process: ISO/IEC 27001:2013 certified
- Focus on long term revenue stream
- Extension of target client segments
- Expansion of service and geographical offerings
- Use of SecUR Number to redefine the market space
- Strong Industry vertical based focus
What gives confidence on their abilities is the kind of clientele that they have:
SecUR number – can be a decent opportunity in future, if they scale up big time (website):
‘More That 30% Of Candidates Lie On Their Resume’s About Past Employment Details, Salary, Residential Address Or Criminal Record An Inflated CV Causes Damage To Your Bottom Line, Month-On-Month, While The Candidate Is Still In The System One Wrong Hire Can Tarnish The Work-Place, Its Productivity, And The Entire Company’s Reputation
When, on an average, there are 118 candidates applying for one vacancy, a pre-verified resume showcasing the authenticity of the candidate’s claims is a breath of fresh air. Add to that the fact that background screening in India is a trend that is catching on, especially in start-ups for whom valuations mean life or death. Any HR will attest to the value of a pre-verified resume and the ease it brings to the hiring process.The Secur Number is a 10 digit code which enables this benefit by providing a comprehensive verification report that meets industry benchmarks for background checks. Accessible online, this report will aid one in going the extra mile with their prospective employer by showcasing one’s integrity. The employer can then easily access the report with the help of the 10 digit number and download all the authentication proofs in the report.’
Technology – Symphony 3.0 (prospectus):
Currently we are using the software “SYMPHONY 3.0” which is a proprietary integrated workflow software of CRP Risk Management Limited that seamlessly directs, tracks and controls the flow of work at SecUR. It is built on a Java Platform, and offers real-time, online movement of processes, as well as information. Symphony 3.0 has been audited and approved by most of our large IT clients from a n information security perspective. We have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding dated August 28, 2017 with CRP Risk Management Limited for buying the SYMPHONY 3.0 Software along with its database for an aggregate consideration of 797.03 Lakhs. CRP Risk Management Limited had developed in-house workflow software, which is currently in its version 3.0, named Symphony. This JAVA-based plat form is the essential glue which holds together all the operational delivery processes, and ensures that these processes deliver the promised output to the client.
There is a tremendous amount of data which is stored in Symphony 3.0. This is the result of all data being accumulated over a period of close to 10 years, as part of the BGC process being delivered by CRP to its clients. Also, because of the inherent design of the Symphony architecture, the database needs to be acquired in tandem with the software application, as it cannot be extracted from the software.
The key components of this database structure are briefly described below:
Education data accumulated over 10 years: Over the past 10 years, as a systematic and thorough effort, the CRP team had accumulated close to 3 crore education records which have been made part of the Symphony database. These education records include a lot of education record archives from colleges and Universities across the country, which have been acquired and digitized with a lot of effort, and at great expense. On a regular basis, the Operational delivery team accesses this data for conducting education checks, as this process is online (and hence faster), and at no incremental transaction cost. Re-creating this database will not just be cumbersome and expensive.
Symphony 3.0 is also home to another key component of our business IP: All the database of educational institutes – colleges, universities, training institutes, schools – along with the process of verifying education records from them is stored in the form of a Master Database in Symphony. This Master Database extends to all the corporates and employers, who have ever been contacted, along with the detailed process of these employers provide verifications. (Detailed information about the software can be found in the prospectus).
Need for background check (website):
Employee related frauds such as inflated salary slips, exaggerated past designations and misleading academic history can cause damage to the bottom-line month on month while the employee is still in the system. Criminal history, questionable political affiliations and a negative personality can cause severe damage to a company’s reputation and future earning potential. Therefore, it is imperative that companies safeguard themselves by performing background checks on all hires.
Emerging trends (prospectus):
While the growth of the background screening industry in India over the past decade has by itself been very exciting, the future holds even more promise. A part from the clear growth drivers of the Indian economic growth story, and the increasing number of sectors adopting it as a good HR practice, we are seeing some clear trends which will give an added impetus to the Indian background check industry.
- Expansion across sectors, and organization sizes
- Extension to contract and other support staff
- Prospective employers asking for a 360 degree view
- AADHAAR, and its implications for employee screening
- Adoption of employee screening by Government and its affiliated institutions
- Ancillary extension, such as Education sector
About the company:
- The only listed BGC company
- Technology and innovation driven
- Good clientele as mentioned above
- Serves over 350+ large companies across 30+ industries
- 300+ employees
- Verifies 5lakh+ resumes every year
- Reaches 39732 pin codes in India
About the numbers:
- FY17 revenue/EBITDA/PAT – 10.2 cr./2.74 cr./1.81 cr.; Q1FY18 – 5.9 cr./1.79 cr./1.25 cr.
- Short history but company looks decently placed in an interesting industry.
- Low base, size of opportunity large and niche product offering.
- 1QFY18 revenues have been more than half of FY17 revenues.
- At this pace they might conservatively exceed revenues of 15cr and PAT of 3cr for FY18. However, I am looking at this more from a very long term horizon. It is close to 120cr mcap right now.
- I believe EBITDA margins on a steady state basis can be 25-30%.
- Valuations – very difficult to assess for a small company with such a short history – so will leave it upto you to judge.
Summary of financials (INR lakhs):
- Company started operations recently hence has a short history of performance.
- Company still small in terms of revenue.
- One of the objects of IPO was to buy out Symphony 3.0 software.
- Any slowdown, tepid growth in hiring / human capital across industries.
- Receivables are high.
- Typical risks associated with SME companies – liquidity is low, lot size is high and others.
All the above details have been taken from public material, largely their prospectus, website.
PS: My personal view is given the low base, large opportunity size and niche product offering, it is a play on jobs growth and ever increasing jugaadisation.
Disclaimer: This note is not a research report but assimilation of information available on public domain and it should not be treated as a research report, investment advice or Buy/Hold/Sell recommendation. I am not registered with SEBI under the (Research Analyst) Regulations, 2014 and as per clarifications provided by SEBI: “Any person who makes recommendation or offers an opinion concerning securities or public offers only through public media is not required to obtain registration as research analyst under RA Regulations”. It is safe to assume that I might have the company in my portfolio and hence my point of view can be biased. Investors are advised to do their due diligence and consult a qualified financial advisor prior to taking any actual investment or trading decisions.
The Smell Engineers:
- Established over 90 years back in 1922
- Manufactures and makes over 9700 products to 4100 customers.
- Aggregate capacities – 18,655 tonnes in fragrance and 3,000 tonnes in flavours.
- Developed 12 molecules in last 5 years (another part of the AR mentions 3 years). Filed patent for 3 molecules. Invested INR264m in R&D in FY17.
- R&D team – 38 members – 20 scientists, 12 perfumers, 6 flavourists, independent evaluators and application executives.
- Product creation and development centres in Mumbai, Bangalore, Netherlands and Indonesia.
- Branded small pack portfolio – Markets fragrance products in small packs of 25 gm to 500 gm to hundreds of traders and re-sellers. Intends to increase the number of branded small packs while exploring opportunities to introduce different application methods for fragrance products.
- Facilities have been registered by USFDA and certified by numerous bodies including FSSC and the FSSAI.
- Has a fully equipped F&F testing lab with gas chromatographs, density meters, automatic polarimeters, tintometers, flash-point testers and microbiological testing.
- Invested in best safety equipment for its workers and and effluent treatment plants near its facilities to ensure quality extends beyond its products.
- Nearly 65% of company’s employees were with the company for more than 5 years as on 31 March 2017.
- Company’s average age of employees is 39.
- Vision – to emerge among the ten largest fragrance companies in the world within the next decade.
- Doubled revenues every five years in the last decade to reach nearly INR10b in revenues during last fiscal.
- Continue to be driven by ambition to achieve USD1b in revenues within a decade.
- India focus – enjoy status of largest Indian origin manufacturer with market share of 13% (F+F).
- Global ambition – currently exports – 32.5% of revenues, 52 countries. Intend to increase our global revenues to USD1b within a decade through small steps in countries with demographics largely similar to India.
- F&F market – 80% of the market is dominated by just 11 players with individual annual revenues of more than USD500m. At the bottom of the pyramid, ~4000 players marked by annual revenues of less than USD50m. (Note: If I recollect correctly, the RHP during IPO had said similar – top 4/5 players in India occupy close to 70% market share).
- SHK occupies the space in the top pyramid (top 11 players) and is arguably growing the fastest in this segment.
- Time has come to leverage our Indian foundation and emerge as a rapidly growing global player.
- Will enter select countries instead of spreading thin across a large number. Do not expect enter a large number of countries at one shot, enter only as many countries that fit into our strategic attractiveness criteria.
- Target countries where we see demographics unfold the way they did in India, leveraging familiarity into how consumer response and appetites will evolve in future.
- India continues to remain central to our strategy – will make deeper investments to tap the attractive growth opportunity.
- Evolving from a fragrance only player to focus on fragrances and flavours both, from a research in safe spaces towards intellectual property research.
- Believe inorganic opportunities could help us fast track growth.
- New molecule research is expensive and time consuming – this means new companies engaged in this cutting-edge kind of research will need adequate resources on one hand and long-term commitment on other. SHK fortunately has both these attributes.
- Possess a library of fragrances that has been compiled over nine decades, despite this were not complacent and made largest research investment within the sector of INR264m in new infrastructure and recruitment to address the growing needs of customers.
- Doing two things effectively – 1. Preparing for a time when an increasing number of customers will seek the unique fragrances built on patent-protected molecules. 2. Already commissioned a studio in Amsterdam manned by international perfumers. Invested in the niche end of fine fragrances bringing a respected international dimension to capabilities.
- Revenues grew 6.5% while profits grew 43% during FY17.
- Revenue mix – domestic 67.5%, exports 32.5%
- Domestic fragrances grew by 7% while domestic flavours posted a 155% YoY growth. Revenue through organic route was 58% in flavours, concluded two acquisitions.
- International fragrances moderated by 14%, while international flavours grew by 80%.
- Exports – marked by intense competition, currency volatility, weakening of Euro vs/ USD (company procured in USD and marketed end products in Euros ). Middle East, which accounted for 31% of company’s international business, was affected by geopolitical tension. Abolishment of import duties across Europe made continental players competitive. Company’s exports grew by 3% in dollar terms as a result of strategic strengthening of processes, productivity and systems in South East Asia. Company addressed growing demand in Indonesia and Thailand through methodical recruitment and other initiatives.
- Three milestones – INR981cr revenues, INR105cr PAT, INR100 cash + investments..
- Despite demonetisation were an entire quarter was impacted, SHK managed to post 6.7% revenue growth in the year, v/s global growth of 1% in the operating segment.
- Company continues to cater to growing needs of a large number of small customers – this was done to precisely derisk against sales slowdown that company was impacted by in last fiscal.
- Resultantly, company increased its market share from 20.5% in 2013 to 2016 – validating point that during periods of market stress, strong companies enhance their footprint.
- EBITDA margins for the company expanded 80bp to 17.9% during FY17, through three initiatives – strong procurement economies through larger volume of purchases, better product mix, generating nearly INR900m in revenues from new products (3 year basis, largely fragrances) (Note: this is almost 8.5% of consolidated revenue from operations for the year).
- Moderated interest outflow by INR150m.
- Company has no gearing currently, corresponding to a net worth of INR8.1b – indicates the financial leverage should the company need to pursue debt funded inorganic opportunities. .
- Receivable days decreased from 91 days to 81 days in FY17
- Mix of flavours in revenue increased from 6% in FY16 to 12% in FY17, on a growing revenue size. This volume-value play influenced overall margins, trend of which is sustainable.
- Domestic formulations and ingredients business performed creditably during FY17 at a time when international business was impacted by increased competition and Euro weakness. Company intends to shift its ingredients manufacturing operations from Europe to India to moderate cost structure and strengthen competitiveness.
- During FY17, company introduced a concept of ‘loyalty bonuses’ to customers – this achieved critical business gains and proved to be a game changer. It encouraged customers to buy products and restock. This was especially done during demonetisation.
- Company commenced marketing fine fragrances, which was well received by market. Company’s strategy around fine fragrances represented its strongest business investment in a long time.
- This segment is large, value added. SHK has had little exposure in this segment.
- Attractive because – knowledge driven, marked by scale, sophistication and sustainability.
- Space is challenging – high customer acquisition time, low success rate, right technology, sustainable sourcing and talent availability and retention.
- Company has already embarked on recruitment of professional perfumers.
- Has invested in cutting-edge research and filed patents, indicating long term commitment.
- Right technology – invested in encapsulation technology that will help it grow in non-traditional segments.
- Company has ventured into this to seed this business over the next 5 years, laying foundation of growth and expected to enhance international position.
- Global extension of fine fragrances represented an inflection point and one of the most decisive initiatives that could progressively evolve the company’s personality across the foreseeable future.
- Commissioned a facility in April 2016 for for manufacture of fine fragrances. Intends to cater demand growing out of Indonesia, Iran, Middle East, South Asia and Africa, strengthening profitability.
Strengthening flavours division:
- Company appointed 12 new distributors to address small scale manufacturers in the food processing sector, keen on diversification.
- Identified distributors with a nationwide retail presence.
- Deepened its presence in Delhi and Hyderabad.
- Aims to reinforce domestic presence by foraying into uncharted Eastern and Central India – West Bengal (opportunity on account of a mass-tea drinking population), Odisha (growing local bakery industry with large production capacities), Jharkhand (new food projects coming up in Ranchi), MP and Chhattisgarh (fast-growing markets).
- Indian opportunity – market dominated by small unorganised players, benefitting large organised players. Acquisitions quickest way to grow. GST to narrow difference between unorganised and organised sectors.
- International presence – intention to grow in South East Asia and Middle East.
Outlook for FY18:
- Acquired Fragrance Encapsulation Technology in FY18 (post 4QFY17 results) because of its deep complementary competence in area of encapsulated technology within the fragrance business.
- Commissioning new fragrance centre in Amsterdam in FY18.
- Strengthened R&D in FY17 to focus on accelerated molecular development.
- Filed patents for products and are optimistic that use of these patented raw materials in fragrance formulations will only enhance our competitiveness.
- Commissioned studios and embarked on recruitment of professional perfumers.
- Target 15% topline growth and 20% PAT growth continually, effectively doubling the business in 5 years.
- Optimistic about 2HFY18 – led by customer launches of products in 3QFY18 and commencement of restocking post GST implementation, strengthening off-take.
Global fragrances industry:
- Global fragrances market is valued at ~USD11b.
- It forms ~45% of the aggregate global F&F market which is valued at ~USD24.5b in 2016.
- Global fragrance market is expected to post a 5% CAGR over the next 5 years. Much of this is being catalysed from India, China and Indonesia where growth is expected to be higher than global average. Growth in mature North American and West European markets is to expected to be muted. APAC fragrance market is expected to be larger than America by 2022.
- Large part of the growth of fragrances market is expected to be derived from soaps + detergents and cosmetics + personal care – enjoy about 30% market share each. Rising disposable incomes in India and China will continue to drive this growth.
- Catalysing this consumption shift is a growing recognition that fragrances are indispensable in modern day marketplace success. A study indicated that key driver of consumer repurchase in fine fragrances was scent 78% followed by overall experience 8%, brand 5% and other realities.
- People can remember smells with 65% accuracy as compared to visual recall which is 50% accurate after three months.
- Outlook for this segment is positive on account of private labels proliferation and premiumisation.
Global flavours industry:
- Global flavours market is valued at ~USD13.5b.
- It forms ~55% of the aggregate global F&F market which is valued at ~USD24.5b in 2016.
- Global flavours market is expected to post a 5% CAGR over the next 5 years.
- America and Asia Pacific account for principal share 35% each of market, followed by Europe, Africa and Middle East.
- Beverages is the largest end-use category 30% followed by dairy, savoury and snacks segment.
- Similar to fragrances, large part of the growth is expected from India, China and Indonesia, while the growth could be lower in mature markets like America and West Europe.
- Outlook positive on account of – rising disposable incomes, growing urbanization, changes in lifestyle preferences, growing willingness to experiment new brands and products, packaging revolution – increase in demand for bakery, beverage, savoury and snack products.
Indian F&F industry:
- Indian F&F market is valued at INR50.1b in 2016 and is expected to grow twice as fast (CAGR 10.2% over next 5 years) as the global market.
- Personal care and cosmetics in fragrances and savoury, bakery and beverages in flavours are expected to register highest growth.
- Growth to come from increased penetration in rural markets, premiumisation in personal care and cosmetics, increased demand for bakery, beverages, savoury and snacks.
- Indian fragrances market estimated at INR25.2b in 2016 is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.2% over next five years.
- Indian flavours market estimated at INR24.92b in 2016 is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.2% over next five years.
- Company’s market share in Indian F&F – aggregate 13%, fragrances 23% and flavours 3%.
- There is a visible shift towards natural products and Ayurveda. Company has an Ayurveda extraction unit.
Challenges / Risks:
- Sustainable sourcing of raw materials.
- Stringent regulations.
- Availability of key talent.
- Product specific risk
- Currency risk
- Sectoral concentration risk
- Competition risk
Disc: Above post is purely from educational perspective. Please refer ‘Disclaimer’ page.