India's Tata posts revenue growth, but profit down

More work done offshore from India helps lower costs

India's largest outsourcer, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), reported Monday that its revenue grew by 6.8 percent to $6 billion for its fiscal year ended March 31. The company's profit however fell by 10.1 percent to $1.12 billion.

The growth in revenue was 23 percent higher in terms of Indian rupees because of the depreciation of the rupee against the U.S. dollar.

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The results are based on U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.

TCS and other Indian outsourcers are facing a slowdown in business from their U.S. and European clients. Discretionary projects are not taking off, and some clients are renegotiating contract prices as they go through difficult fiscal times, said N. Chandrasekaran, TCS's chief operating officer, during a press conference that was also webcast.

The company's CFO S. Mahalingam said that a single-digit decline in prices was expected in the current fiscal year.

India's second largest outsourcer, Infosys Technologies, said last week that its revenue in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2010, may decline by 3.1 to 6.7 percent over the previous year.

For the fiscal year ended March 31 this year, Infosys posted revenue of $4.7 billion, up by 11.7 percent over revenue in the previous year. Profits were $1.3 billion, up 10 percent over the previous year.

TCS increased operating profits in the last fiscal year by 11.7 percent to $1.43 billion by improving operational efficiency, including an increase in work delivered offshore from India.

Doing work offshore helped the company increase staff utilization and better manage costs, Mahalingam said.

>The company had 143,761 staff at the end of the fiscal year. It added 32,354 employees during the year, including staff from the company's acquisition of Citigroup's back office services subsidiary in India.

TCS has made 24,885 campus offers for the current fiscal year. It added 163 customers during the year, of which 36 were in the fourth quarter.