IT training firm NIIT Ltd on Thursday reported a steep 91 per cent decline in standalone net profit to Rs 3.83 crore for the quarter ended March 31, 2013, hit by drop in enrolments due to a weak market sentiment. The Gurgaon-headquartered firm had posted a profit of Rs 43.27 crore in the year-ago period, it said in a BSE filing. The firm, which provides training solutions in IT, BPO, banking, finance, insurance, among others, reported 37 per cent fall in standalone net sales at Rs 149.33 crore in the January-March quarter of 2012-13 fiscal against Rs 236.40 crore in the same quarter of 2011-12 fiscal.

In consolidated terms, it posted a net revenue of Rs 221.6 crore against a revenue of Rs 257 crore during the same period. On the decline, NIIT Chairman Rajendra S Pawar said: "Our career solutions segment was impacted due to a weak market sentiment." He added that the industry's tough time is coming to an end and things will look brighter from here. "It is the tail end of the slowdown, which is affecting market sentiment, but our assumption is that from this year things will change for the better," he noted. Revenues from career solutions segment stood at Rs 458 crore in 2012-13 fiscal against Rs 583 crore in 2011-12 fiscal, NIIT CEO Vijay K Thadani said. Enrolments started dropping from Q1 onwards, but its impact was majorly felt in Q3 and Q4, Thandani said, adding "enrolments are recovering now." For the fiscal year 2012-13, NIIT's consolidated net profit declined by 76 per cent to Rs 26.25 crore from Rs 110.16 crore in 2011-12 fiscal. Its consolidated net sales also fell to Rs 960.80 crore in 2012-13 financial year as against Rs 1,260.28 crore in 2011-12 fiscal.

On the performance, Thandani said: "Despite the tough market conditions, our enrolments have not been impacted. We got about jobs for 36,890 students in last fiscal, which is almost similar that achieved in 2011-12." NIIT graduates' job-readiness and acceptance by industry continued to be favourable with over 10,000 students getting placed during Q4, he added. Besides, NIIT's Cumulative Cloud Campus enrolments are doing well, with its numbers crossing 27,000 in Q4, he said. On the company's investment in cloud solutions and future course, Pawar said, "True, times are challenging, but it is also true that there is very little competition for us and so we utilised this time in making investments in sectors that we believe will drive our growth in the future." Established in 1981, NIIT is a leading global talent development firm, which offers learning and knowledge solutions across 40 countries.

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