Unilever India Meets Profit Estimate Amid Cost, Rural Stress

Unilever India Meets Profit Estimate Amid Cost, Rural Stress

Bloomberg

Unilever Plc’s Indian unit reported quarterly profit that met analyst expectations as price hikes helped Asia’s largest consumer goods maker by market value manage persistent inflation that has hit the pockets of consumers in the country’s vast and largely impoverished hinterland.

The Mumbai-listed Hindustan Unilever Ltd. posted a 17% rise in net income to 22.4 billion rupees ($300.6 million) for the quarter ending Dec. 31, according to an exchange filing Thursday, exactly in line with the average profit forecast by analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Revenue rose 10% to 129 billion rupees, while total costs rose 8.3%. It saw a volume growth of 2%.

The maker of Hellmann’s mayonnaise and Dove soap, like its parent unit, has been roiled by rising input costs amid global supply chain disruptions. India’s retail inflation climbed for the third straight month in December. While prices of key raw materials including palm oil and crude oil-based packaging have spiked, Hindustan Unilever passed on some of it to consumers in product categories such as soaps and detergents in the last quarter.