Hindustan Unilever posts 19.5% rise in profit to US$207m in second quarter

INDIA – Mumbai based consumer goods company, Hindustan Unilever has reported a 19.51% increase in net profit to US$207.33 million on account of double-digit growth across categories in the second quarter.

According to the company’s regulatory filings, sales during the quarter under review stood at US$1.24 billion against US$1.11 billion in the year-ago period, up 11.45%.

HUL Chief Financial Officer Srinivas Phatak said while the company expects the demand to be stable in the near term, the company will watch out for currency depreciation and crude price increase.

He said the company had undertaken a price increase of 2-3% across select home care category products which include brands such as Domex, Vim and Surf Excel.

The food and refreshment category which included Kissan, Brooke Bond Red Label tea, Bru coffee and ice cream and frozen desserts business, accounted for US$231.69 million, up 11.66%, during the quarter as against US$207.49 million a year earlier.

Revenue from homecare products stood at US$418.78 million, up 12.44%, compared to US$372.42m reported in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal.

“Our focus on strengthening the core, leading market development and driving excellence in execution has enabled us to deliver competitive and profitable growth. In the near term, we expect demand to be stable.

Our strength of agility and responsiveness gives us confidence to navigate the headwinds arising from crude inflation and currency depreciation,” said HUL Chairman and Managing Director Sanjiv Mehta.

The company noted that its well-established savings programme and leverage in other expenses enabled mitigate material inflation and drive margin improvement.

The company’s board has declared an interim dividend of US$0.12 per share of face value for the financial year ending March 31, 2019.

HUL had reported volume growth of 12% in June quarter 2018 and 4% in September quarter 2017.

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