New Delhi, Jan 27 (PTI) FMCG major Hindustan Unilever Ltd on Wednesday reported a 20.3 per cent rise in consolidated net profit to Rs 1,938 crore for the third quarter ended December 2020, helped by growth in volume and prices.
HUL's consolidated net profit was Rs 1,631 crore in the October-December quarter previous fiscal.
Its sales during the quarter increased 20.26 per cent to Rs 11,969 crore, as against Rs 9,953 crore a year ago, Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) said in a regulatory filing.
However, on like to like basis, excluding the impact of the merger of GSK CH and acquisition of VWash, its sales growth was 7 per cent, HUL CFO Srinivas Phatak said while addressing a post earning call.
'Our comparable revenue growth is 7 per cent,' said Phatak, adding 'it has two components. One is volume plus mix and another one is the price. Price growth is 3 per cent and volume plus mix, which is underlying volume growth (UVG) is 4 per cent'.
According to HUL, higher mobility, consumer-relevant innovations and investments behind market development are driving business momentum.
'We are very pleased with the performance, penetration and the volume share are going up nearly 86 of our business, which is remarkable for the company of our size and the multi-category in which we operate,' said HUL CMD Sanjiv Mehta.
Health, hygiene and nutrition segment formed 80 per cent of HUL’s portfolio and continues to grow in double digits with significant improvement in discretionary categories.
'Our consumer-relevant innovations, market development and execution excellence have enabled us to drive broad-based growth across our categories in the December quarter. I am particularly pleased with the performance of our Nutrition business and with the recovery in the discretionary segments of our portfolio; these are structurally attractive and offer immense growth potential,' he said.
COVID-19 cases coming down sharply and economic activity in the country continue to improve, Mehta added.
On whether the worse is over, Mehta said: 'Absolutely, without any doubt'.
HUL's total expenses rose 21.65 per cent to Rs 9,548 crore in Q3 FY 2020-21 compared to Rs 7,849 in the year-ago period.
During the quarter, HUL’s revenue from the home care segment was down 1.36 per cent at Rs 3,409 crore as against Rs 3,456 crore of Q3 FY 2019-20.
Consumption of laundry was adversely impacted due to confined living but with increased mobility, its performance in the quarter improved.
'With increased mobility, Fabric Wash performance in the quarter improved sequentially,' HUL said, adding 'our focus on driving market development has enabled us to grow Liquids and Fabric Sensations segments strongly. Household Care continued its strong performance across segments delivering double-digit growth'.
HUL's revenue from beauty and personal care increased by 9.44 per cent to Rs 4,868 crore compared to Rs 4,448 crore.
'Beauty & Personal Care grew 9 per cent with robust performance across categories and strong double-digit growths in Skin Cleansing, Hair Care and Oral Care,' the company said.
Growth in the skincare portfolio was led by good demand pick-up in the winter portfolio. HUL’s consumer-focused portfolio interventions in Hair Care are yielding strong results, it added.
Its food & refreshment category rose 79.95 per cent to Rs 3,356 crore as against Rs 1,865 crore, helped by double-digit growth in segments such as tea, ketchup and soups.
'In Tea, all our brands continue to grow in high double-digits and well ahead of the market,' HUL said, adding 'in Foods, Ketchup and Soups performed strongly growing high double-digits. Our Nutrition business too grew in double-digits as business returned to normalcy post-restoration of disrupted supply lines'.
While, ice creams, foods solutions and vending businesses are improving progressively as out-of-home consumption occasions increase, it added.
Revenue from 'other' segment, which includes exports, infant and feminine care, grew 64.07 per cent year-on-year to Rs 548 crore compared to Rs 334 crore.
Over the outlook, Mehta said the rapid rollout of vaccines will give further impetus to economic growth.
'The near-term demand outlook is improving, and we expect to see revival in urban while rural should continue to do well. Inflationary pressures are building up in select commodities and we will manage them judiciously. I am confident that we are very well positioned to capture the growth opportunities and accelerate momentum,' he said.
Shares of HUL on Wednesday settled at Rs 2,390.75 apiece on BSE, down 0.87 per cent from the previous close. PTI KRH BAL BAL