NIGERIA – Nestle Nigeria has reported 29.6% growth in profit after tax to US$59.36 million and the announcement, which sparked demand for the stock moved its share price to close at US$4.44, Business am live has reported.

In the six months ended June 2018, sales increased by 11% to US$374.47 million from US$338.14 in 2017.

The beverage segment led the growth in profit with 15% rise in sales to US$138.97m, accounting for 37% of group sales while the food segment which accounted for 63% of group sales saw a 9% sales lift to US$236.06 million.

Nestle said revenue grew 10.9% to US$374.47 million, managing sustained growth despite unfavourable business environment at some point during the period.

“We are pleased with the sustained growth of our Company amid the tough competitive business landscape.

These results were possible due to the relentless efforts of our highly passionate team to provide high quality and affordable nutritious food and beverages to Nigerian consumers,” said Mauricio Alarcon, group chief executive officer at Nestle Nigeria Plc.

“We will maintain the focus on delighting consumers with our nutritionally superior products by increasing promotion initiatives and providing more nutrition education.

In line with our Creating Shared Value principle, we remain committed to building thriving and resilient communities through local sourcing, expanding the commercialization of our products and strengthening our value chain.”

In the year 2017, the fast moving consumer goods company achieved sustained growth as revenues grew 34%.

Nestle then said it will continue to invest behind brands and route-to-market activities while proactively managing input cost pressures to stay on the growth path.

Export potential in Africa free trade

In a separate media briefing, Nestle Nigeria said it sees huge export opportunities in the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCFTA) as it will enable it get the documentation and the needed approvals for exports.

“You know that Nestle is present not only in Nigeria but across West Africa, also across East Africa and across South Africa.

The way we operate at Nestle is to consolidate our base and then export to neighbouring countries, so our products are already going across the continent, for instance, the Nescafe we have here are imported from Ivory Coast leveraging on our regional hubs and the Golden Morn which is made in Nigeria, is going across the borders to other countries,” the briefing read.

The company inaugurated US$11.4m Milo liquid beverage plant in February, a part of its Agbara factory reflecting its continued confidence in the industry and growing niche of consumers.