HUL profit up 12%
FMCG giant Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) on Friday met estimates when it reported a 12 per cent growth in standalone net profits for the December quarter of 2019.
HUL posted a net profit of Rs 1,616 crore compared with Rs 1,444 crore in the same period of last year.
During the period, sales grew to Rs 9,696 crore from Rs 9,357 crore in the third quarter of 2018-19.
The underlying volume growth, a number which the market closely tracks, came in at 5 per cent which was ahead of estimates of some of the brokerages.
“This quarter witnessed an overall challenging market environment, mainly reflecting a sharp slowdown in rural and discretionary spends. However, HUL has delivered a resilient performance.
“Our continued focus on innovation and market development has helped sustain underlying volume growth at a steady 5 per cent. We have also delivered a healthy margin improvement,’’ said Sanjiv Mehta, chairman and managing director.
He added that in the short term, demand outlook and market growth continue to be challenging but the company will continue to invest in its brands and offer superior value to consumers.
“I remain confident of the medium to long term prospects of the Indian FMCG sector and am hopeful that policy measures will spur the rural economy and drive consumption,’’ Mehta said.
Top brass reshuffle
The company has appointed Prabha Narasimhan as executive director of its home care segment as part of a top level reshuffle within the organisation. Narasimhan will replace Priya Nair, currently executive director — home care, who moved as executive director — beauty and personal care.
Nair will take over from Sandeep Kohli, who will relocate to Dubai as VP – beauty & personal care for North Africa, West Asia, Turkey and Russia markets, HUL said.