IT

4QFY21 Revenue run rate to be same as 4QFY20 – LT Technology Services

Update on the Indian Equity market:
On Tuesday, Nifty 50 ended 0.2% higher at 11,897. The gainers were led by HCLTECH (+4.3%), TECHM (+3.2%), and ASIANPAINT (+2.9%), while BRITANNIA (-5.8%), ONGC (-2.6%), and GAIL (-2.3%) led the losers. Among the sectoral indices, REALTY (+3.9%), MEDIA (+2.0%), and IT (+1.4%) led the gainers. PSU BANK (-1.4%), FMCG (-0.4%), and METAL (-0.2%) were the only losers.

LTTS recently released its earnings for 2QFY21. Mr. Keshab Panda, MD, and CEO of L&T Technology Services (LTTS) discussed the result and outlook for FY21 with CNBC TV-18 on 20th October 2020:

• At the beginning of the outbreak of Covid-19, the company took some measures: investment required in new technology, the business model required for each segment, and different geography. These have helped achieve sequential growth in each segment.
• All 5 segments will grow sequentially going forward. The company will offer the new technology demanded by customers quickly in the post-Covid era.
• There are two reasons for ~160 bps improvement in margins sequentially. First, revenue increased 4.1% QoQ and there has been a 4.5% increase in utilization in Q2. There is some room for improvement in the coming quarters as well.
• LTTS has learned that solution selling. To give an example, their medical devices segment which is doing well, they are thinking of taking it to the pharmaceutical and provider space.
• There are multiple levels- operational lever, solution offering lever, and business mix for margin growth going ahead.
• Margin growth depends on the business mix. Some of the segments they have are highly profitable and some segments are not as profitable. Telecom, industrial, and plant engineering have higher segmental margins compared to hi-tech, and part of the transportation subsegment.
• Another parameter is the offsite-onshore ratio. LTTS did well in Q2 and moving forward if customers believe the work can be done from home, the work will be done from India. Higher engineering offshoring will also add to margin improvement going ahead.
• Revenue and margins are expected to be better in Q3 and Q4. The management has guided for a revenue decline of ~7-8% for FY21.
• They intend is to come back to growth as soon as possible. Q1 suffered a drop in revenue and cash flow issue and realigning will take some time.
• Goal is that the 4QFY21 revenue run rate should be the same as 4QFY20.
• The impact of furlough coming in 3Q for LTTS is not clear yet. The positive side is the pipeline and orders in hand and how soon the proposals are accepted by customers.
• Sizeable deals got pushed to Q3 as the decision-making circle is a little longer today than in pre-Covid. Some analysis which was not done by customers in pre-covid is been done today. Cost-saving, analysis of cash flow, business model, credentials -all these are analyzed extensively post Covid.
Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener website)
• The closing price of LTTS was ₹ 1748/- as of 20-October-2020. It traded at 27.7x/ 21.9x/ 18.8x the consensus earnings estimate of ₹ 63.2/ 79.7/ 93.0 per share for FY21E/FY22E/FY23E respectively.
• The consensus target price of ₹ 1537 implies a PE multiple of 16x on FY23E EPS of ₹ 93.0/-.
Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

HCL Tech to roll out salary hikes for all employees in phases

Update on the Indian Equity Market:
On Monday, NIFTY closed flat at 11,873 (+0.9%). Top gainers in NIFTY50 were ICICI bank (+5.1%), Nestle (+4.5%), and GAIL (+4.2%). The top losers were Divi’s Lab (-3.6%), Eicher Motor (-3.1%), and Hero Motocorp (-2.9%). Top sectoral gainers were PSU BANK (+4.2%), BANK (+3.1%), and PVT BANK (+3.2%) and the sectoral losers were PHARMA (-1.7%), MEDIA (-1.6%), and AUTO (-1.1%).

Excerpts of an interview with Mr. C VIjaykumar, CEO and Mr. Prateek Aggarwal, CFO, HCL Technologies (HCLT) with ET Now dated 16th October 2020:

• They signed 15 transformational deals. The momentum in the market for modernisation and digital transformation services has been great.
• The life sciences and healthcare and retail CPG verticals grew 8% plus sequentially which is a very impressive performance. All verticals, all geographies, all service lines, and all modes had a sequential growth. So it is a very good all-round performance.
• Some amount of recovery is due to the dip that they had in the first quarter but a lot of transition of deals that were done in the previous quarter got done extremely well which helped in ramping up revenues.
• A lot of existing customers continue to demonstrate their faith by giving them more projects and some incremental work which all got built. The digital foundation, which is their erstwhile infrastructure services, is very strong.
• In the second half also they have projected an overall margin growth. They have upgraded the guidance. Now 20%-21% is the full-year EBIT guidance. So in the second half, they will continue to see a good margin performance.
• The salary increases that they are giving will create a certain impact as they get into the second half of the year. That is why overall margins in H1 were ~21% but for the full year, they are guiding it to be 20% to 21%.
• Mode 1 has got a lot of digital foundation services that has also grown impressively. Mode 2, of course, has grown almost 7% sequentially and almost 15% plus from a year-on-year perspective.
• This is all the new technologies including cloud solutions, application modernisation, analytics, internet of things and cybersecurity. This is good for the margin profile apart from the cost controls that are automatically in place. Due to some of the higher value services increasing as a ratio is also good from a margin perspective.
• The Board has decided to double the dividend that they have been paying on a per quarter basis. So far they were paying Rs 2 per share per quarter and now in this quarter, the board has doubled the Rs 2 per share per quarter to now Rs 4 per share per quarter.
• The important thing is this is not a one-time kind of a thing. It is something that they intend to continue for the quarters going forward and that is the important thing.
• The overall pipeline is at an all-time high. Their pipeline has increased by almost 35% compared to what it was. Their booking increased by 35% compared to what it was in the last quarter. The pipeline has increased by almost 20% and it is at an all-time high.
• However, conversion of these deals and that converting into revenue is normally a 3-6-months cycle. They have done good bookings in the last two quarters.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener and investing.com websites)

The closing price of HCLT was ₹ 846/- as of 19th October 2020. It traded at 19x/ 17x/ 15x the consensus earnings estimate of ₹ 45.3/ 50.3/ 55.7 for FY21E/22E/23E respectively.
The consensus price target of HCLT is ₹ 937/- which trades at 17x the earnings estimate for FY23E of ₹ 55.7/-.
Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

5 focus areas to reinvigorate the company – Wipro

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Thursday, Nifty closed 2.4% lower at 11,680. Within NIFTY50, ASIANPAINT (+0.4%), JSWSTEEL (+0.2%), and COALINDIA (+0.1%) were the only gainers, while BAJFINANCE (-5.0%), TECHM (-4.4%), and ICICIBANK (-4.1%) were the top losing stocks. All the sectoral indices closed with losses led by BANK (-3.4%), PVT BANK (-3.3%), and FINANCIAL SERVICES (-2.9%).

5 focus areas to reinvigorate the company – Wipro

Excerpts of an interview with Mr. Thierry Delaporte, MD & CEO, Wipro, published in the Business Standard on 14th October 2020:
● Out of the impacted sectors, Wipro is now seeing a good volume of deals in the BFSI, retail, and consumer sectors. The manufacturing sector is still impacted by the pandemic. However, the need for transformation will lead to growth coming back in the next couple of quarters. The aerospace and automobile sectors are still under pressure.
● Clients have intent on reducing expenses. But in reality, spending on technology actually increases. Spending on technology is a business requirement now. Not just the CIO but also the chief marketing officer, chief of the supply chain, chief digital officer are all asking for technology. The reduction will be in terms of spending on legacy processes.
● Wipro is focusing on five main areas. They are-
1. Focus on large clients and large deals as opposed to going after new clients
2. Focus on more markets and sectors where Wipro can claim leadership
3. Refine offerings by creating more vertical differentiation
4. Invest in talent to acquire the best domain and technology expertise
5. Refine the operating model to drive simplicity and nimbleness
● In order to chase and win large deals, Wipro plans to enhance and reinforce the global client partners’ power so they can have a bigger impact on clients.
● Due to the pandemic, Wipro has now learned that employees can work from home productively. On the other hand, they also need to connect with the rest of the organization for the culture and sense of belonging. Mr. Delaporte is of the view that going forward there will be a hybrid model where employees will have more flexibility without any judgment on where they choose to work from.
Consensus Estimate (Source: market screener website)
● The closing price of WIPRO was ₹ 342/- as of 15-October-2020. It traded at 20.3x/ 19.0x/ 17.9x the consensus EPS estimate of ₹ 16.8/18.0/19.1 for FY21E/ FY22E/ FY23E respectively.
● The consensus target price of ₹ 283/- implies a PE multiple of 14.8x on FY23E EPS of ₹19.1/-.

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

TCS Management on COVID trigger, a multi-year transformation

Update on the Indian Equity Market:
On Friday, NIFTY closed flat at 11,914 (+0.7%). Top gainers in NIFTY50 were Wipro (+4.4%), ICICI bank (+4.1%), and Axis bank (+3.7%). The top losers were Grasim (-2.6%), Hindalco (-2.5%), and UPL (-2.3%). Top sectoral gainers were PSU BANK (+3.1%), BANK (+2.8%), and PVT BANK (+2.6%) and sectoral losers were REALTY (-1.6%), PHARMA (-1.3%), and MEDIA (-0.9%).

Excerpts of an interview with Mr. Rajesh Gopinathan, CEO & MD, and Mr. NG Subramaniam, COO, TCS with ET now dated 8th October 2020:
● They fundamentally believe that technology will be a solution and therefore there will be even more relevance to their services to their customers.
● They were confident about their ability to switch to the new operating model and that was what was underlying the commentary that they had given earlier on that in about six months’ time or the end of Q3, they should be looking at coming back to parity and from a cost structure and margin perspective, by the end of Q4 they should be looking at parity.
● What has changed during the course of the last six months is that they have been able to execute on the operational resiliency program that NGS laid out; second, they have been able to participate significantly in this technology-led transformation that is at the heart of their customer’s response to the COVID crisis.
● First-quarter was about their internal resiliency. The second quarter has been about participating in the customer side. Now they are a lot more confident because both legs have been executed and it is with that confidence that they are giving their comments.
● What they are seeing is an urgency to accelerate the digital transformation on all fronts. Three priorities – the first one is the resiliency of your IT landscape. The second is their own internal employee experience, can they continue to operate remotely and safely and then contribute even more productively? The third being customer experience, how can they continue to be wherever their customers want to do business and how their experience can be touchless, contactless while providing all the accessibility options for different segments if possible.
● If you put these three things together, then the migration to the cloud becomes very important. The intent is to move to a hyper-scale platform with agility, resilience, adaptability, flexibility, and all those things.
● In the current context, they provide significant value and there is clearly an urgency to say that look I am going to move to that kind of an architecture which is much more modern, much more futuristic, which means that when you go an invest in this and it is not going to be a simple hop on and hop off once you move in there.
● It is going to be irreversible and you have to continue with that journey for three to five years where you will pretty much become a native and will embed your businesses into that technology by which you will extend your organizational capabilities with the ecosystem concept and bring in a lot more credibility to the business you do business with your customers. That is the multi-year transformation that they are seeing.
● In a technology, anything more than three to five is very difficult to call out but they are very confident about three years because it is something they have visibility to.
● Within those three to five years, there are going to be a lot more new ways of doing business, of reaching out to customers who are going to emerge.
● COVID has provided a business trigger and they are not sure whether in the absence of COVID, this adoption would have been at the same speed. It is unfortunate that the trigger happened in such a negative way but the trigger for the shift has kicked in. That is the way to understand what is going on.
● In the last three months, they have upped their quotient on delivery guidelines for delivering through secured, borderless workspaces.
● We are seeing that people love the flexibility that they have. While talking to one of the employees the other day, he was saying that this conference room crap has completely gone away and the collaboration meetings are a lot more democratic and they are able to decide and deliver things faster.
● They are able to incrementally innovate, multiple elements, and levers of productivity which is there. They are completely focussed on making sure that it is working superbly and people are able to deliver productivity with a lot of pride.
● Their operating philosophy has been to maintain stable margins. They are very systemic about trying to manage within that range which they think is beneficial to all stakeholders; customers, their employees, and their investors.
● Short-term volatility will have its own impact and it is more of a philosophical thing. There is no right margin to operate at, it is relative competitiveness and the aspiration that you have. It is a fair and achievable and sustainable band and that continues to be their guiding principle.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener and investing.com websites)
● The closing price of TCS was ₹ 2,811/- as of 9th October 2020. It traded at 33x/ 28x/ 25x the consensus earnings estimate of ₹ 85.1/ 101.0/ 113.0 for FY21E/22E/23E respectively.
● The consensus price target of TCS is ₹ 2,802/- which trades at 25x the earnings estimate for FY23E of ₹ 113/-.

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

There will never be a threat of hostile takeover in Happiest Minds: Happiest Minds

Update on the Indian Equity Market:
On Friday, NIFTY closed in minor red at 11,505 (-0.1%). The top gainers in NIFTY50 were Dr Reddy (+9.9%), Cipla (+7.1%) and Adani Ports (+3.7%). The top losers were HDFC Bank (-2.3%), Shree Cement (-2.0%), and Bajaj FInserv (-1.8%). The top sectoral gainers were PHARMA (+4.9%), REALTY (+1.9%) and AUTO (+0.4%) and Top sectoral losers were PSU BANK (-1.6%), BANK (-1.3%), and FIN SERVICES (-1.2%)

Excerpts of an interview with Mr Ashok Soota, Chairman & Director, Happiest Minds with ET now dated 18th September 2020:
● He wanted to make a distinction between what is a broader IT services market and the digital part of the IT services market.
● They are born digital, born agile, 97% of their business comes from digital and the traditional IT market is growing much smaller and that is why they are able to grow at a faster rate — a compound of 20% plus as compared to about 8% to 10% for the larger IT players today.
● IT services business is growing, it is the entire market typically and slowdowns and recessions and more so in this one where everything is becoming virtual, IT will definitely grow faster within that. The transformation towards digital will also get accelerated.
● Their largest and fastest-growing vertical is edutech. How that is going to benefit from this environment because everything is becoming virtual.
● The other vertical in which they have got a very strong presence is the rest of the high tech world. Again because it is a core competence at Happiest Minds, two of them account for 76% of their business which has been only marginally or not impacted by the COVID crisis.
● The other 24% has been affected but fortunately, they have got a very marginal presence in travel and hospitality which is the worst impacted vertical and therefore they have to continue to build on the strengths that they have.
● When they began Happiest Minds, they were in what was called a SMACK pack which included analytics and cloud after that they have added over the years the internet of things, machine learning, virtual and augmented reality and so on.
● Going forward, I do not want to speculate on whether my shares will go up or go down if they raise more equity obviously, but there are no immediate plans to do so.
● Whatever happens, they will keep one thing in mind that there will never be a threat in the sense of ownership which could create a hostile acquisition situation.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener and investing.com websites)

● The closing price of Happiest Minds was ₹ 358/- as of 18-September-2020.
● Equity shares of Happiest Minds Technologies Ltd are listed effective from September 17, 2020. So we don’t have any consensus estimates.

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

With growth, margins will also improve – TCS

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Monday, NIFTY closed at 10,815 (+0.4%). Top gainers in NIFTY50 were Tech M (+5.5%), Hindalco (+3.8%), and HCLT (+3.7%). The top losers were Power grid (-2.2%), Bajaj Finance (-2.1%), and HDFC Bank (-1.9%). Top sectoral gainers were IT (+1.7%), METAL (+1.5%), and FMCG (+1.3%) and sectoral losers were REALTY (-1.6%), PSU BANK (-1.6%), and FIN SERVICES (-1.3%).

Excerpts of an interview with V Ramakrishnan, CFO, TCS and Milind Lakkad, CHRO, TCS with ET now dated 10th July 2020:

  • 95% of our people are working from home and only 1% come to work for various reasons. It has been a change for everybody. It hasn’t been an easy cakewalk but they have done very different things.
  • Associate health and well being has been a paramount thing for them and has been a key factor in decision making.
  • They do everything while continuing to take care of associates’ health and ensure that they continue to be a happy organisation.
  • The aspiration of 26-28% margin is very much intact. Of course this pandemic has changed certain dynamics. So, the timing of when they will get back, is dependent on the recovery. They are confident of recovery in the coming quarters.
  • Recovery will be very segment and specific country driven, but they expect that to happen across many of the sectors.
  • Along with growth, obviously the margins will also be improving because in the current quarter, the reduction in the margins is directly related to the contraction in the demand and in the revenue.
  • While they were able to get back almost 300 bps outside of anything to do with employee cost but still they had a dip of about5% that is directly related to the drop in revenue so with improvement in the recovery, they will also see the improvement in margins.
  • The investment is driven by what is required to make sure that they are abreast of what is happening on the technology front to make sure that TCS people are equipped and in terms of what they can showcase to their So the investments have been going on and the balance sheet is strong.
  • They will continue to invest in research and innovation, in building capabilities at scale among the employees and also in labs and customer experience areas.
  • Going forward, they will continue to get all 40,000 offers they made in the campuses in India and that will go through from this mid-July though the year. The engagement with the fresher recruits and everything else is on very actively for the last three months and they will honour all of those offers.
  • They have to be conscious that some of the sectors have been badly affected and there is an expectation from some of the customers and some of the sectors for support. They have been very supportive and we have looked at it in the contextually and depending on the relationship, it is a very mutually beneficial relationship.
  • Their dividend or return policy has been 80% to 100% of free cash flow. So, there is no departure from that policy. In the last couple of years, they have been very close to 100% or even slightly higher. They will stay within that range.
  • Customers’ ability and willingness to adapt to the Work from home model and to be able to connect people from wherever they are. So, the location independence of this model will change the dynamics for everybody.
  • They always thought that the most important meetings have to happen in person and that is not the case anymore. They just come together, discuss and have a chat and then the two CEOs connect in a jiffy. Those are big things that will help establish a deeper relationship with customers going forward.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener and investing.com websites)

  • The closing price of TCS was ₹ 2,222/- as of 13-July-2020.  It traded at 27x/ 23x the consensus earnings estimate of ₹ 82.6/ 95.6 for FY21E/22E respectively.
  • The consensus price target of TCS is ₹ 2,088/- which trades at 22x the earnings estimate for FY22E of ₹6/-

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

 

Technology will drive the economic recovery – Tech Mahindra

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Wednesday, NIFTY ended down 94 pts (-0.87%) at 10,705.
Among the sectoral indices, METAL(+1.57%), FMCG (+0.84%) and PHARMA (+0.71%) were top gainers while AUTO (-1.95%),REALTY (-1.95%)and IT(-1.72%) were among the top losers.
Among the stocks, INDUSINDBK (+4.5%), VEDL (+2.7%) and JSWSTEEL(+2.31%) were the top gainers. BAJFINANCE(-4.62%), ZEEL(-4.6%) and ASIANPAINT (-3.25%) were the top losers.

Technology will drive the economic recovery: Tech Mahindra CEO
Edited excerpts of an interview with Mr. C P Gurnani, Chief Executive Officer, Tech Mahindra with Economic Times dated 7th July, 2020:

Need for digitalisation is on a high and so it is still advantage Indian IT industry.
Manufacturing, travel, logistics, hospitality are some of the sectors re-inventing themselves to be future ready and we are helping our clients to cope with the post Covid world., says CP Gurnani, CEO, Tech Mahindra

• When asked about his views on future of IT companies, he said that most of the Tech M family have remained safe and healthy, the pandemic have impacted few lives and locations. The command and control centre of the company is constantly monitoring the wellbeing of the employees.
• His comments on IT sector’s performance as compared to the month of Mar-20, now that the Pharma, financial and telecom sectors have normalized: He believes that here will be two quarters of stress and if the second wave is not that strong and till the time a vaccine is not discovered, overall global IT spend will come up. Technology will drive the economic recovery and the way consumption is done. So he remains optimistic but at the same time conscious that manufacturing sector, travel, logistics, hospitality are some of the sectors which are re-inventing themselves to be future ready ad Tech M is helping their clients to cope up with the post Covid world.
• When asked about IT budgets and client engagement he informed that they are all seeing increased demand from sectors like telecom, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, media and entertainment and e-education. So that is the positive side. The second positive side is the growth of the digital economy. The need for digitalisation has become equally important for the corner shops or the grocery shops. People now want to participate in the digital economy, even the retail sector. The stress is only for offline, the online retail sector is doing well. So technology and online services are playing a critical role during the lockdown and in a lot of ways, the feeling of optimism is relative and the relative part is where we will continue to see demand.
• When asked about his views on telecom sector and whether it is now going to be the driving vertical because globally spend in telecom and data is only going to intensify, is Tech M in a position to capitalise on it, Where does he see the telecom business moving for Tech Mahindra, he answered that a lot will depend on the next quarter results because all of us understand that the new age technologies like 5G, AI, machine learning, data analytics, Cloud, automation will be the drivers for change in growth for the telecom businesses. How we translate it into revenue will depend upon how these organisations respond to economic development or in certain cases, a little bit of a slowdown in the economy. He also requested to remember that at this stage the stimulus money has kicked in. The US is about 17-18% deficit, India would be about 7-8% deficit. If we follow the money and look at the digital requirements, there is business to be had but a lot depends on how the world responds over the next two quarters.
• When asked about the reason why market is not rewarding Tech M with best PE multiple and lower margins, he stated that the Board has asked for a plan which addresses three parts to what Tech Mahindra will do. Number one is the industry mix. Number two is geography mix. One of the biggest challenges, which is an advantage as well as a disadvantage is that US business is only 45-48%, the rest of the world is 55%. That has effectively meant the energies which have gone into operating in Latin America or operating in Africa could have been better used. Tech M is now working on a plan focusing on: a) geographic reach, b)service offerings and c)some of their big bets like 5G have been relatively slow but he committed to the board that we do understand the challenges. We are going to follow the path of differentiated connected solutions strategy at the same time, we need to do a better job of choosing a few of the geographies particularly where because of the local labour policies, it becomes very difficult to operate profitably. So we are conscious of the need for turnaround or transformation. We are very clear and know the direction, now we need to bring in the speed.
• When asked whether the Covid crisis have pushed the plans forward by 6 or 12 months, he replied that he will attend the financial analysts meet himself in November-20 and would give definitive answers. Till that time, because of the uncertainty called Covid he would want to reserve his comments but the strategy, direction and speed — all three are high on his radar.
• His views on work from home: Today, 93% people are working from home. About 6% to 7% go to work which is also because there are clients in Australia, Philippines, some in the US, who have restrictive and more stringent policies. So till December, the ratios are not going to dramatically change. Most of the clients have accepted that work from home is the reality. The positive outcome to all of this is that most of us are now becoming a lot more conscious about data security, cyber security and making sure that we use and equipment which are part of the Tech Mahindra ecosystem. The last thing you want is risks off too much of distributed processing. So 25% to 30% work from home is a given in the future. People like him would still go to office because some people like to interact with people, to have some cooler talk, go to the canteen and ask people for feedbacks and listen to them. Similarly, he would like to visit his customers. So, he thinks about 25% to 30% at any given point of time will be work from home. About two days in a week, people would like to come back to work. The structured interactions, the whole human machine technology refresh will happen in those two days a week. It is interesting times, but the new normal is here to stay.
• When asked about the cost structure and any chances of cost reduction due to work from home he said that in a lot of ways most of Indian IT companies despite being a $181 bn business had stopped investing a lot on campuses. The reason was that most of the growth was coming which was non-linear growth. Number two, it is also evident that if 25% of the workforce is common for everybody, then we do not need commercial space for a long time.The third part is it is not that the employee cost or the infrastructure cost will come down dramatically. Wewill have to start providing some level of allowances which compensate because people are not spending their time and energy from coming to the workplace. In balance, it is a good thing for the industry. It is a great thing for the gig economy, it is almost a wonderful thing for a flexible workforce and it is a wonderful thing for adoption of AI and machine learning.
• His outlook on India specific business for IT companies as no Indian IT company gets even 10% of the business from India : Most of us are hesitant about India business. Nasscom has been trying to persuade various government departments on the payment terms. Unfortunately, what has happened is that IT buying is almost like they used to buy hardware where the manpower cost was probably 6% or 7%. Today the manpower cost in any IT project is 60% to 70%. So, in payment terms and the way acceptance of the solution is addressed, the Indian government has not adopted itself to the new normal. We have seen it in the last two-three years that the Indian IT spending may have gone up, but the players which are participating, have only got very limited. India Inc has to spend more on IT needs. It has to realize the need for cloud, need for cyber security is very high and at the same time it has to take into account that whether we like it or not, employee payroll has to be delivered every month and you cannot have a situation where an employee works for a project and get paid after a year.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener, investing.com websites)

• The closing price of Tech M was ₹ 582/- as of 08-Jul-20. It traded at 14x/12x the consensus EPS estimate of ₹ 40.8/50.3 for FY21E/ FY22E respectively.
• The consensus target price of ₹ 647/- implies a PE multiple of 12.9x on FY22E EPS of ₹ 50.8

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

Built-up social capital helped in working in remote areas during the crisis: Infosys

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

Markets shrugged Thursday’s losses as Nifty closed the day 1.1% higher at 10,142. The top gainers for Nifty 50 were Tata Motors (+13.7%), SBIN (+8.7%) and INFRATEL (+8.3%) while the losing stocks for the day TCS (-1.8%), HINDUNILVR (-1.6%) and BAJAJAUTO (-1.4%). The gaining sectors for the day were PSU BANK (+6.9%), MEDIA (+5.3%) and NIFTY BANK (+3.2%). FMCG (-0.7%) was the only losing sector for the day.

Edited excerpts of an interview with Mr Salil Parekh, CEO, Infosys Ltd; dated 4th June 2020 from Economic Times:

  • Over the past few years, Infosys has invested in technology infrastructure, remote access and telecommunications. As a result, the Company was able to scale up work from home with ease and security. They currently employ 240,000 people of which 90% have migrated and are working from home.
  • The infrastructure for working from remote places was already in place for Infosys. The Company simply had to scale it up and make it effective.
  • About the future of the work environment, he mentioned that people are underestimating the value of building social capital by working together. He explained that remote working has worked for the Company because of the social capital that they built over the years of working together. His sense is that working from home shall continue till we achieve medical milestones in therapeutics and vaccines post which we should look at rebuilding and expanding social capital because that is the glue which has helped to put all of this together.
  • The Company has not yet finalized on the target model for working culture. There are tremendous benefits to work from home or remote working. It creates a lot of flexibility for many employees. The way is to build a model once we are out of this crisis.
  • The IT industry will look at the most effective ways of cutting costs like travel expenses, and onsite expenses. There will be some efficiencies in adopting this model but it is too early to quantify how much per cent will be saved on a permanent basis.
  • He emphasized on the fact that hiring is still an important part of the IT industry. The industry is witnessing technology demand in the digital cloud areas.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener website)

  • The closing price of Infosys Ltd was ₹ 707/- as of 05-June-2020. It traded at 18.9x/ 16.7x/ 15.2x the consensus EPS estimate of ₹3/ 42.3/ 46.3 for FY21E/ FY22E/ FY23E respectively.
  • The consensus target price of ₹ 725/- implies a PE multiple of 17x on FY22E EPS of ₹3/-.

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

Covid-19 will push a lot more customers to look at outsourcing: C Vijayakumar, HCL Technologies Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Friday, NIFTY ended up 53 pts (+0.57%) at 9251 level.

Among the sectoral indices, PHARMA (2.13%), FMCG (1.9%) and IT (0.83%) were among the top gainers while PSU BANK (-1.9%), AUTO (-1.29%) and PVT BANK (-0.7%) were the losers. HINDUNILVR (4.3%), SUNPHARMA (+3.9%) and DRREDDY (+3.7%) were the top gainers. NTPC (-3.7%), M&M (-3.7%) and AXISBANK (-3.6%) were the top losers.

 

Covid-19 will push a lot more customers to look at outsourcing: C Vijayakumar, HCL Technologies Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

 

Edited excerpts of an interview with Mr C Vijayakumar, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of HCL Technologies:

 

  • Digital transformations at global companies, expected over the next two to three years, will now hasten in crisis-mode due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Mr Vijayakumar said sectors or companies that were not looking at outsourcing will do so now to save costs.

 

  • When asked between the United States and Europe, where does he expect growth to pick up, he said that the US and Europe are not going to be very different, because in Europe, some geographies are already opening up. Around 23 states in the US have also already relaxed some guidelines and there is some hope that things will stabilize quickly, but customer behavior may not change immediately.
  • His views on traditional and digital services in coming fiscal years: Traditional services also have some very strong propositions, like digital workplace, engineering services. Some of the demand is intact and it is only getting accelerated. So, barring the short-term challenge, HCL Technologies will have good growth momentum. Mr. Vijaykumar thinks there could be a hit in the first quarter for sure. Industrial, auto, and aero have been impacted significantly, and non-grocery retail is also quite seriously impacted. But, almost 12% of revenue comes from Life Sciences and close to 20% of revenue comes from tech services. Both are strong verticals.
  • When asked about the kind of projects and wins expected after the recovery, he replied that Digital spends will (only) accelerate. Whatever transformation was expected to happen over the next two to three years, it’s almost going to get done in crisis mode, because for all the businesses, digital is the most viable channel to engage. He sees acceleration in cloud adoption, digital transformation, spend on digital workplace and cybersecurity. He believes the hospitals of the future will only have operation theatres and ICUs, everything else will be done through telemedicine.
  • He further informed that since work from home has been implemented, the productivity is much higher. They have tools to track productivity of every individual. Currently, there is a lockdown so obviously everybody is glued on to work, but how a large-scale work from home stacks up in a non-lockdown scenario needs to be seen in future.
  • He stated that HCL Technologies is very open to look into the opportunities to acquire companies, products, platforms or capabilities if there are attractive assets available. They have not only been acquisitive, but have made the acquisitions work.

 

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener)

  • The closing price of HCL Technologies was ₹ 519/- as of 8May-20. It traded at 13x/ 11.5x the consensus EPS estimate of ₹ 40.2/45.1 for FY20E/ FY21E respectively.
  • Consensus target price of ₹ 580/- implies a PE multiple of 13x on FY21E EPS of ₹ 45.1/-

 

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”

 

 

 

Current situation not comparable with 2008 financial crisis- Mr Salil Parekh

Excerpts from an interview of Mr.Salil Parekh,CEO, Infosys with ET Now on 27th April 2020:

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Monday Nifty closed 1.4% higher at 9,282. Among the sectoral indices PVT bank (3.0%), IT(2.4%), FIN Services (2.1%) closed higher. None of the sectors close negatively. Britannia (+7.0%), Indusind Bank (+6.6%) and Bajaj Finserv (+6.2%)closed on a positive note. NTPC (-1.1%), HDFC Bank (-0.9%) and M&M (-0.8%) were among the top losers.

  • The company doesn’t see any clients in this situation to go bankrupt as there is tremendous amount of fiscal support in the US market.
  • There will be some near-term challenges as there are some requests for price cuts and credit extensions. Due to this reason the company has suspended revenue guidance.
  • The US government’s massive $2-trillion stimulus is expected to provide liquidity to companies, including banking and financial services that are the biggest outsourcers of IT.
  • Infosys gets 31% of its revenue from banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI). Infosys admitted in its recent earnings call that the vertical would be impacted negatively due to lower interest rates, deferred loan payments and low premiums.
  • While comparing the current situation with 2008 global financial crisis, he said the current situation has affected everyone every geography, every sector at the same time and in a way nothing from recent experience is equivalent with current situation.
  • Speaking on whether clients would look to reduce their dependence on India, particularly for BPM, given the disruptions in these operations because of lockdowns, he said even if there is any impact it will be on the smaller players.
  • On-shore 98% of employees are working from home and In India it is 93%, including BPM. Due to the strength which the company has demonstrated many large clients are going to focus on Infosys and some of the smaller players will lose out on that.
  • Clients are seeing Infosys as a stable partner with a very strong financial position and with $3.6 billion in cash reserve the company in a stable position.
  • He said the company is having discussions with clients on vendor consolidation, on how they want to look at some captives, a lot of discussions in the cloud, movement on virtualization, workforce transformation.
  • Speaking about the whistleblower allegations made against the company in October 2019, he said the company is extremely transparent and the management is committed to keep focus on clients, shareholders and employees.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener and Investing.com websites)

  • The closing price of Infosys was ₹ 665/- as of 27-April-2020.  It traded at 17.7 x/ 15.6x/ 14.3x the consensus earnings per share estimate of ₹ 37.4/42.6/46.3 for FY20E/ FY21E/ FY22E respectively.
  • The consensus average target price forInfosys is ₹ 725/- which implies a PE multiple of 15.6x on FY22E EPS of ₹46.3/-.

 

Disclaimer: “The views expressed are for information purposes only. The information provided herein should not be considered as investment advice or research recommendation. The users should rely on their own research and analysis and should consult their own investment advisors to determine the merit, risks, and suitability of the information provided.”