HLL's Pat In 1st Quarter Increases By 23.4 %, Annualised EPS Rs 47.73

26-04-2000 :

Profit Before Tax at Rs 343.28 crores, rose by 24.2 % (MQ 1999 : Rs 276.47 crores). The tax provision at Rs 80.67 crores is higher by 26.8 % (MQ 1999 : Rs 63.64 crores), reflecting the impact of the surcharge introduced from April 1999.

Announcing the results, Mr K. B. Dadiseth, said: "In sluggish market conditions, our domestic businesses of Soaps, Detergents, Personal Products, Beverages and Branded Staples (75 % of total sales) have shown good sales growth. Ice Cream and Culinary sales were flat while the Oils and Fats sales realisations continue to be affected by the downward trend in prices of commodity oils. The overall sales growth of 7 % comprises an underlying volume growth of about 6 % and price increases of under 1 %. The Exports business had 5 % growth in difficult international trading conditions."

"The company has acquired a 74 % equity stake in Modern Food Industries Limited (MFIL) in January 2000. This acquisition gives the company a strategic entry into fresh product distribution and is in line with the company's vision of developing an integrated wheat flour business," Mr. Dadiseth said.

HLL recorded good sales growth, led by Home and Personal Care (+ 8 %), Beverages (+ 32 %) and Branded Staples (+ 28 %). The packet tea business registered growth, after a difficult period in the past 2 years caused by the discriminatory excise duty. Sales of Ice Cream and Culinary Products were flat. The continued fall in commodity oil prices adversely impacted Oils and Fats sales (- 37 %).

HLL continues to proactively invest surplus funds, contributing to a healthy increase in Other Income (27.2 %). The Company estimates Business Restructuring costs for the year 2000 at Rs 120 crores. Accordingly, in line with HLL's policy, Business Restructuring costs of Rs 30 crores (on a proportionate basis) have been charged in the first quarter. HLL will review such costs each quarter, on the basis of estimated spends for the year, and adjustments as necessary will be suitably disclosed. Business Restructuring costs charged in the first quarter of the previous year was Rs 25 crores.


India:

Hindustan Unilever Limited
Unilever House,
B. D. Sawant Marg,
Chakala, Andheri (E),
Mumbai - 400 099.

T: +91-22-39830000
F: +91-22-22871970

mediacentre.hul@unilever.com