India's Hindustan Unilever quarterly profit up 18%

28th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Hindustan Unilever (HUL) said Thursday that quarterly net profit leapt by a forecast-beating 18 percent as sales of beverages, soap and other goods boomed.

The company, 52 percent owned by Anglo-Dutch group Unilever, said net profit for the three months to June climbed to 6.27 billion rupees ($139 million) from 5.33 billion rupees in the same period a year earlier.

HUL, India's biggest consumer goods firm by revenues, said sales in the fiscal first quarter rose 15 percent to 55.04 billion rupees.

The earnings topped market expectations of a 5.8-billion-rupee profit.

The firm's home and personal care business rose by 15.4 percent year-on-year, reflecting buoyant growth in sales of soap and personal products.

"The food business grew by 14.9 percent on strong volumes in beverages, packaged foods," the company said in a statement.

HUL chairman Harish Manwani said the performance marked the fourth straight quarter of double-digit profit growth.

Manwani, however, added the business environment remained challenging with high commodity prices.

Hindustan Unilever's shares slipped 0.18 percent to 325.3 rupees following the company's earnings announcement.

© 2011 AFP

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