Unilever sales helped by gains in personal care - UK
IOL Business - Apr 15th 2016, 10:50
London - Unilever reported first-quarter sales growth in line with estimates as gains in its laundry detergent and personal-care units offset falling prices in Europe.
Underlying sales increased 4.7 percent, London- and Rotterdam-based Unilever said on Thursday (14 April), compared with the 4.6 percent median estimate of 20 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Growth slowed from 4.9 percent in the fourth quarter, when the maker of Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream flagged 2016 would be a tougher year. The company said on Thursday that consumer demand remained “fragile” and volume growth slowed in the quarter.
“We are maintaining momentum despite a tougher external environment, with all four categories gaining market share,” Chief Executive Officer Paul Polman said in a statement.
Polman is grappling with lower consumer prices in Europe and a slowdown in emerging markets such as China and India that account for about 60 percent of its sales. To mitigate this, the CEO has appointed a new leader to reinvigorate the struggling spreads business and is said to be considering a sale of Unilever’s Latin American soy-based juice unit.
Unilever shares rose 1.7 percent in Amsterdam on Wednesday (13 April), giving the company a market value about 123 billion euros ($139 billion).
Underlying sales exclude acquisitions, divestments, and currency fluctuations.From © Independent On-line 2016. All rights reserved.
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