PACRA Maintains Entity Ratings of Jauharabad Sugar Mills Limited
Pakistan’s sugar industry is the country's 2nd largest agro-based industry, comprising 90 mills with an annual crushing capacity estimated ~65–70mln MT. The industry is trying to overcome the supply challenges. However, support price, set by considering the cost incurred by farmers, remains a constraint. During MY21, the overall sugar production increased by 15%, YoY, to 5.6mln MT (MY20: 4.9mln MT) due to better crop availability and an increase in area under cultivation. The recent surge in local sugar prices was registered by the demand-supply gap. Previously, the sales tax levied on sugar was increased to 17% (previously 8%,) charged on the PKR 60/KG price, which contributed to higher prices. In the FY21 budget, a sales tax of 17% was proposed to be levied on the market retail price instead of PKR 60/kg. However, Government has allowed not to charge sales tax on market retail price till Nov-21. Moreover, in MY21 crushing season, the Government increased the support price of sugarcane to PKR 200 per maund (previously, it was increased to PKR 190 from PKR 180 per maund). Actual realized sugarcane prices at the mill gate were even higher. To meet the local demand and curb the hike in sugar prices, the Government planned to import 0.8mln MT of sugar. Out of this, 0.3mln MT has already been imported, till Jun-21. Lately, TCP approved to import another 0.1mln MT of sugar. Going forward, despite higher input costs, higher sugar prices are expected to remain favourable for millers.
The ratings reflect an improved business profile of Jauharabad Sugar Mills Limited ('Jauharabad Sugar' or 'the Company) in line with the current dynamics of sugar industry. Relatively better sugarcane availability in MY21 resulted in higher sugar production. Despite high procurement costs, rising sugar prices has led to improved revenues. The Company has displayed improvement in margins on the back of relatively low conversion costs. Over the years, the Sponsors' business acumen and support (in the form of loan) have remained beneficial for the Company. The management pays continuous attention to enhance efficiencies through BMR. The financial profile of Jauharabad Sugar remains adequate, characterized by improved working capital management, adequate coverages and modestly leveraged capital structure.
The ratings are dependent upon the management’s ability to sustain business margins, while improving the financial risk profile. Any significant deterioration in the Company’s margins and/or coverages would have a negative impact.
Jauharabad Sugar Mills Limited is a public limited company, listed on Pakistan Stock Exchange since 1973. The Company was acquired from Saigol Group in Oct-13 by Cane Processing (Pvt.) Limited. The Company’s operational crushing unit, having sugarcane crushing capacity of 7,000 tons per day, is located in Jauharabad, Khushab District. The Company’s registered office is situated in Kot Lakhpat, Lahore. The Company is engaged in the manufacturing and sale of refined sugar and its by-products; molasses and bagasse.
Jauharabad Sugar is majorly owned by a Holding Company - Cane Processing (Pvt.) Limited (64%) - and individuals of Latif family (10%). The family has an effective shareholding of ~74%, while the Company has a free float of more than 20%. The Company's Board is Chaired by Mr. M. Aamir Beg.