Spice Hotspot

Spice Mobility* is delisting from the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National Stock Exchange (NSE). The company has informed BSE that its board of directors has approved a proposal received from its promoter Smart Ventures Private Limited to voluntarily delist Spice Mobility’s equity shares from NSE and BSE on January 2, 2015. The company is now seeking approval from its member shareholders for this delisting.

Interestingly, ahead of this board meeting, the company shares grew by 20% to Rs 26.40 at market close on December 29 and reached a peak of Rs 33.5 on December 31. It closed at Rs 30 today, down 9.9% from Rs 33.30 at yesterday’s close.

There is currently no information on why Spice is delisting its shares from the stock exchanges, but here’s a look at some recent major developments at the company:

– Device business has posted a loss in 9 of last 12 quarters

Mobile devices which contributes to a majority of Spice Mobility’s revenues has been in loss in 9 of the last 12 quarters. The only exceptions being Sep 2013 quarter (Q1-FY14) where it posted a profit of Rs 6.83 crore, June 2013 quarter (Q4-FY13) where it posted a profit of Rs 9.3 crore and Dec 2012 quarter (Q2-FY12) where it posted a profit of Rs 2.1 crore. In the previous quarter, the company had posted a net loss of Rs 9.6 crore, due to the continued increase in brand building expenses. The segment had accounted for 91.02% of the company’s revenues in the quarter.

Spice Devices revenues

– Services revenues is also not growing

Revenue from the services business also isn’t really growing. In fact, the revenues actually declined for the whole of FY14. It posted revenues of Rs 49.05 crore in the previous quarter, down 7.36% from Rs 52.95 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. That being said, Spice Digital did pick up 26% stake in txtBrowser parent Vavia Technologies in September last year.

Spice Services revenues

Management Changes

Prashant Bindal

Prashant Bindal was appointed as the CEO of Spice Mobility with effect from August 27, 2014. He took over from RS Desikan who ceased to become the company CEO on June 30, 2014, after a two and a half year stint. Dilip Modi had also taken over as the chairman of S Mobility in February 2014 after BK Modi had stepped down from his position as the director and chairman of the company.

Share buyback

S Mobility had completed its long-drawn buyback offering in May 2014, buying 10.22 million shares for Rs 36.85 crore at a price of Rs 36.05 per share. This represented 61.42% of the maximum buyback size. Through this buyback, promoter group shareholding had increased to 74.36%.

Shutting handset manufacturing units

With the market transitioning towards smartphones, Spice Mobility had shut its two handset manufacturing units, both in Baddi in Himachal Pradesh, India to focus entirely on contract manufacturing and distribution of handsets.

The company had also launched two Android One handsets and a Firefox OS based handset over the past year, but it doesn’t seem to have gathered much attention and possibly sales over the last year. We are also not sure whether the physical Android stores launched in partnership with Google in 2013, has helped the company’s revenues or not.

Also readTrends and developments in the Handset segment in India in 2014

(Image credit)

*Disclosure: Spice Digital is an advertiser with Medianama.