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'Once economic normalcy returns, will have favourable view of rewarding shareholders'
'Once economic normalcy returns, will have favourable view of rewarding shareholders'

New Delhi, Sep 6 (TIWN) Larsen & Toubro (L&T), India's leading engineering, technology, construction and financial services conglomerate recently announced the closure of the strategic divestment of its Electrical & Automation (L&T E&A) business to Schneider Electric, a global player in energy management and automation for Rs 14,000 crore.

The divestment is in line with L&T’s stated goal of unlocking value for future growth. In an interview with IANS, S.N. Subrahmanyan, CEO & MD, Larsen & Toubro talked about the transaction. He said the sale proceeds will be utilised partly for de-levering the consolidated debt levels in L&T’s balance sheet and also to strengthen the liquidity buffer warranted by the current economic environment.

“We are in the middle of an unprecedented pandemic which has caused considerable uncertainty to business during the past 5 months. In such times, it is necessary to strengthen the balance sheet and stay adequately liquid”, he added. On distribution to shareholders, L&T CEO & MD said that once clarity emerges about the duration and the impact of the pandemic, assessment of surplus cash and its potential distribution to shareholders will be made.

“Once the economic environment returns to normalcy and the core businesses of L&T start generating cash on a consistent basis, we will have a favourable view of rewarding shareholders in the most tax efficient manner”, Subrahmanyan said. On which other non-core assets will be on the block, Subrahmanyan said, “We keep conducting a strategic review of our business portfolio from time to time and take a call on the basis of consistent long-term planning process. As per this review, we may divest or dilute certain concession businesses of L&T such as L&T Metro (Hyderabad) and Nabha Power Ltd as and when the economic situation normalizes”, he added.

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