Hindustan Unilever reports 9 percent Q1 rise despite ‘challenging’ rural growth

Hindustan Unilever reports 9 percent Q1 rise despite ‘challenging’ rural growth

Hindustan Unilever has reported a sales increase of 9 percent in 2017 Q1, despite experiencing difficulties in rural growth.

The FMCG reported a net profit of Rs 1,283 crore, a 9.28 percent rise compared to the similar quarter last year of RS 1,174 crore, meanwhile net sales grew 4.98 percent from Rs 8,662 last year to Rs 9,092 in 2017. Color cosmetics was said to have helped with growth.

HUL Chairman Harish Manwani said: “Both growth and margin improvements were delivered through a combination of sustained innovations, a comprehensive savings programme and a relentless focus on execution in the market place.”

With the domestic business rising 6 percent, HUL said it was positive about its medium term outlook, however, it was facing challenges in achieving rural growth, which has been attributed to poor rainfalls. This was hoped to recover slightly due to a forecasted monsoon and a boosted government focus on infrastructure.

The company stated, “During the quarter, trade sentiment remained cautious, particularly in the run up to GST implementation. Despite high promotional intensity, stock pipelines remained low and varied across categories, channels and geographies.
“Personal wash witnessed broad-based growth across all brands. Colour cosmetics delivered yet another quarter of robust growth. Fair&Lovely relaunch was well received.”

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