Unilever fourth-quarter net profit rises 15% to €1.04bn

03 February 2011 11:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Unilever's fourth-quarter net profit for 2010 rose 15% year on year to €1.04bn ($1.44bn), with strong volume growth in emerging markets, the Anglo-Dutch consumer goods company said on Thursday.

Turnover for the quarter increased 12.0% to €10.82bn compared with the same period in 2009, while operating profit grew 50% to €1.46bn, despite weak consumer confidence in many markets and the impact of rising commodities costs in the second half of the year, Unilever said.

“We delivered strong volume growth, particularly in emerging markets, which continued to be the engine of growth. We gained volume share in all regions, driven by stronger innovations, significant increases in marketing investment and the extension of our brands into new territories,” said Unilever CEO Paul Polman.

Looking ahead, Polman said the company would continue to focus on volume growth.

“Despite the intense competition and the return of commodity cost volatility, our objectives remain: profitable volume growth ahead of our markets, steady and sustainable underlying operating margin improvement and strong cash flow.”

Unilever’s full-year net profit increased 26% to €4.59bn compared with 2009, while turnover grew 11% to €44.26bn.

Unilever consumes a large amount of chemicals for the production of a wide range of consumer goods in the personal- and home-care markets.

($1 = €0.72)

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By: Franco Capaldo
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