IT Earnings Q4: IT majors Infosys and TCS left the street unimpressed post their March-quarter results.
Both Infosys and TCS, which together comprise 11 per cent of the Nifty 50 index weightage, missed analysts’ estimates in quarterly profit as companies curtailed spending on tech to prepare for a cooling economy following turmoil in the US banking sector.
India’s two biggest software services companies saw a miss on both revenue and margins during the March quarter. While TCS missed expectations, Infosys delivered a shocker.
Among the positives would be large deal wins and a sharp decline in attrition rate in Q4 for both companies, however, broadly the performance elevated uncertainty ahead.
On Wednesday, Infosys’ share price closed at Rs 1,388.60 apiece down by 2.79 per cent on BSE. TCS tumbled by 1.61 per cent to end at Rs 3189.85 apiece.
Here’s a comparison of the major highlights between TCS, Infosys
TCS: Net profit at TCS surged to Rs 11,392 crore from January to March, 14.8 per cent higher than the previous corresponding period. Analysts estimated Rs 11,530 crore on average.
Infosys: The company posted a net profit of Rs 6,128 crore, a growth of 7.8 per cent over the previous year. Analysts expected a profit of Rs 6,613 crore.
TCS: Revenue from operations for the Mumbai-headquartered firm came in at Rs 59,160 crore, a 16.9 per cent on-year increase.
Infosys: The revenue growth in constant currency for FY23 came in at 15.4 per cent, lower than the guidance. Notably, during the December quarter earnings announcement, Infosys – which competes in the market with TCS, Wipro and other IT firms – had raised FY23 revenue guidance to 16-16.5 per cent (against the previously projected band of 15-16 per cent).
Top and bottomline figures
TCS: The company managed to report double-digit growth in the topline and bottom in Q4FY23. Both the top and bottomline figures were below Street estimates. Its outgoing CEO Rajesh Gopinathan conceded that the 0.6 per cent growth in the topline over the December quarter has been “weaker than anticipated” because of the setbacks in North America.
Infosys: The company missed analysts’ estimates for both bottomline and topline.
TCS: Despite mounting economic challenges, Mumbai-based TCS has won some large contracts in recent months, including a deal worth more than $700 million, its largest in the UK in three years, with an insurance services provider.
Its January-March order book stood at $10 billion, down 11.5 per cent from a year ago, but with an “all-time high number of large deals.
Infosys: Infosys’ large deal total contract value stood at $2.1 billion in the three months to March.
TCS: The board approved a final dividend of Rs 24 per equity share.
Infosys: The board has recommended a final dividend of Rs 17.50 per equity share for the financial year ending 31 March, 2023.
TCS: During the March quarter, TCS turned back to its historical trend by becoming a net hirer, and added 821 employees to take the overall strength to 6.15 lakh people. Employee attrition, a key metric for IT companies, was at 20.1 percent, up from 15.3 percent in the previous quarter.
Milind Lakkad, the Chief Human Resources Officer, said the company is maintaining the 40,000 freshers-hire target for FY24 and has already made 46,000 offers. The salary revisions will be like usual, and the top performers will get a 12-15 per cent hike, he said.
Infosys: Infosys’ head count witnessed a net reduction of 3,611 employees in the March 2023 quarter as compared to the previous quarter, and the total workforce strength slipped to 3,43,234 as of 31 March, 2023.
Infosys’ voluntary attrition – a metric keenly watched by analysts – showed improvement, easing worries. The attrition rate stood at 20.9 per cent in Q4 FY23 against 24.3 per cent in Q3.
So What Went Wrong For Both The Companies?
Outgoing TCS CEO Rajesh Gopinathan said that the sequential decline seen in the North America business caught the company by surprise and that the demand bounceback they anticipated did not come through.
Gopinathan said that the company was anticipating constant currency revenue growth of 1.5-2 per cent during the quarter and ended up with 0.6 percent. He attributed the miss to the decline in the North America business, particularly in the US.
BFSI, which is TCS’ biggest segment by revenue, grew by 9.1 percent in the quarter, compared to 11.1 per cent during the same period last year.
Infosys MD & CEO Salil Parekh said that there were unplanned ramp downs seen in some of the company’s clients and that the delays in decision-making resulted in lower volumes.
He further said that the unplanned ramp down took place in telecom, hi-tech, and retail segments, and within the financial segment, it came in the asset management and investment banking businesses.
“In addition we had some one-time revenue impact. While we saw some signs of stabilisation in March, the environment remains uncertain. This has led to our Q4 year on year growth of 8.8 per cent in constant currency and quarter on quarter decline of 3.2 per cent,” he said.
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