State-run gas distribution company GAIL (India) Ltd on Tuesday reported a 13 per cent rise in net profit for the third quarter of this fiscal (October-December), helped mainly by an increase in natural-gas trading.
Profit in the three-month period grew to Rs968 crore from Rs860 crore a year earlier.
This was less than the Rs1,000 crore average of estimates in a Dow Jones Newswires poll of eight analysts. The company's shares slipped a little on the Bombay Stock Exchange after the news.
GAIL, which transports about 78 per cent of India's natural gas, said quarterly sales jumped 35 per cent to Rs8,365 crore from Rs6,212 crore, led by a 50 per cent surge in revenue from natural-gas trading to Rs6,773 crore.
Profit was higher also because the company carried more natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Revenue from natural-gas transmission rose 17 per cent to Rs1,001 crore and LPG transmission grew 11 per cent to Rs129 crore.
GAIL, which has a gas pipeline network of 8,100 km, will add 1,500 km by the end of December to expand transmission capacity, chairman B C Tripathi told a news conference in New Delhi.