India’s Tata Motors sees an increase in profits due to pent-up demand

The Mumbai-based company also owns luxury British brand Jaguar Land Rover. (Facebook Image / Tata Motors)

Mumbai: The company said on Friday that profits from India’s Tata Motors jumped 67% during the fourth quarter of 2020, capitalizing on pent-up demand that prompted consumers to buy cars.

The Mumbai-based company, which owns luxury British brand Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), saw consolidated net profit rise to 29.06 billion rupees during the October-December quarter from 17.38 billion rupees the previous year.

The results represent a strong comeback for the auto giant, which recorded losses for three consecutive quarters as the epidemic dampened demand in domestic and international markets.

“Due to the strong holiday season and the apparent preference for personal mobility, the (passenger car) business has recorded its highest sales in the past 33 quarters,” CEO Guenter Butschek said in a statement.

JLR sales were up 19.1% year-on-year in China, but have fallen globally as uncertainty over the epidemic and Britain’s post-Brexit future continues to weigh on demand.

The company said revenue from Tata Motors rose 5.5 percent to 756.54 billion rupees.

Indian automakers were struggling with falling demand due to an economic slowdown and lack of liquidity until 2019, before the virus and months-long lockdown dealt another blow to Asia’s third-largest economy.

But India’s economic outlook is now looking forward, as both the International Monetary Fund and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government expect double-digit growth in fiscal year 2021-22.

With more than 10.5 million cases of coronavirus, the country of 1.3 billion is the second most affected country in the world.

But the new reported cases have fallen dramatically in recent weeks and authorities hope the economy will be boosted with a major vaccination campaign that began this month.

Shares of Tata Motors closed 1.6% lower in Mumbai before the earnings were announced.

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