Business News

Unilever Group sales rose 4.4% in first quarter 2024 ahead of analyst projections

Unilever Group Plc experienced a sales boost in the first quarter, surpassing expectations, as CEO Hein Schumacher drives forward with the company’s turnaround strategy and consumers gravitate towards premium brands.

The Anglo-Dutch consumer goods conglomerate reported a 4.4% sales growth in the first three months of the year, outperforming analyst forecasts of 3.5%.

Furthermore, it achieved volume growth for the second consecutive quarter, as it endeavors to regain market share in its core areas of stock cubes and soap production.

According to Bloomberg News, shares of Unilever rose as much 5% in early trading in London. The stock is down more than 9% in the past year.

A prolonged period of high inflation has stretched consumer budgets and pushed shoppers to cheaper supermarket brands. That trend appears to be reversing for some European consumer groups, such as Unilever and Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc, but not Nestle.

The world’s biggest food maker missed sales growth expectations for the first quarter Thursday, when it said that volumes were once again contracting, blaming North America for the slowdown.

Unilever’s beauty and wellbeing unit, which includes premium skincare and vitamins, was the fastest-growing division with sales rising 7.4%, led mostly by higher volumes.

In March, Schumacher announced the spinoff or sale of its ice cream business, which has around €8 billion ($8.6 billion) in annual sales, as part of a wider effort to refocus the business. The unit grew just 2.3% on an underlying basis made up of higher prices and lower volumes.

Unilever reiterated Thursday that it expects sales growth of between 3% and 5% this year, with a modest improvement in its underlying operating margin.

Naijaonpoint reported that Unilever Nigeria Plc recently released its unaudited interim report for the three months period ended 31st March 2024.

The Company recorded turnover of N32.3 billion in the period under review which represents 58% topline growth compared to N20.5 billion Turnover recorded in the corresponding period in 2023.

The company recorded a gross profit of N13.5 billion for the period ended 31st March 2024 which is 39% increase versus N9.7 billion reported for same period last year.

The result showed a profit from continuing operations of N3.4 billion for the period ended 31st March 2024 compared to a profit for the corresponding period in 2023 of N2.8 billion which is 19% up versus 2023.

The result for the total business shows a net profit of N3.4 billion for the period ended 31st March 2024 compared to a net profit for the corresponding period in 2023 of N2.7bn which is 26% up versus 2023.