'Inflation at manageable level, expect better margins in H2'

The current quarter will have some lag due to the carry forward of some of the high-priced inventory, but the fourth quarter would witness better margins, Puri said.
Pidilite Industries MD Bharat Puri
Pidilite Industries MD Bharat Puri

NEW DELHI: The inflation is still high compared to the past, but it has come down to a ‘manageable level’, Pidilite Industries MD Bharat Puri has said.

He also expects better margins in the second half of this fiscal.

The current quarter will have some lag due to the carry forward of some of the high-priced inventory, but the fourth quarter would witness better margins, Puri said.

He is optimistic about India and the home improvement sector, and Pidilite is ready for the next phase of growth with its ongoing capex programme.

Puri expects the rural markets to bounce back with positive volume growth, helped by a good monsoon in the next six months.

According to Puri, it will take a little bit of time but will come back. The demand is most impacted in rural and semi-urban India.

“As inflation moderates and more money comes into the hands of the consumer because of the good monsoon, we do think that over the next six months, hopefully, demand should improve from there also,” Puri said.

On Pidilite Industries, he said right now, the biggest concern over the last 12-18 months was unprecedented inflation in the input cost.

The cost of some principal raw materials such as vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) went up from $1,000 per tonne to an all-time high of $2,500 in the first half of this fiscal, Puri noted.

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