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October 1, 1999
BEL looking for VLSI production partners
The public sector Bharat Electronics Limited is scouting foreign partners for the manufacture of very large-scale integrated circuits besides development of new designs, Chairman and Managing Director V K Koshy has said.
BEL now aims to achieve the target of Rs 14.5 billion as against Rs 11.99 billion achieved during 1998-99.
Dr Koshy said the company ended with a comfortable order of Rs 17.63 billion last year and received a letter of intent for various equipment worth Rs 1.63 billion. "Orders for telecom products are also on the increase and executable orders on hand are at a record high" he added.
He said the company aims to double its order to the Department of Telecommunications to about Rs 1.2 billion this year and had been successful in regaining its share of the telecom business.
He said last year only 98 per cent of the orders could be met with the rest affected by the sanctions that affected projects at its units in Bangalore and Ghaziabad.
However, some measures adopted by the company during 1997-98 paid off and the overall impact of the US sanctions could be contained to a considerable level.
He said the company made a profit after tax of Rs 536.3 million on sales of Rs 11.99 billion.
Dr Koshy said the company would be performing much better in the coming years because the Defence Research and Development Organisation with whom BEL has close interaction, is encouraging production of a number of technologies developed by it.
The content of business through indigenous technology is expected to increase in the coming years.
He said BEL has invested 5 per cent of the turnover in research and development activity. This level of expenditure is one of the highest in any Indian company but still falls short when compared to international players.
Nearly 70 per cent of the products sold during the year were through indigenous research and development efforts.
He said the company exported goods worth Rs 311 million directly during 1998-99 as against Rs 250 million the previous year.
The exports included telecom network to Kenya, small signal devices to Austria, the Philippines, Singapore, Hong Kong and China.
It also exported defence communication equipment to Botswana, very high and ultra high frequency transreceivers to Brazil and Malaysia besides night vision goggles and optical components to Israel and Singapore.
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