Unilever PLC ULVR 3rd Quarter Results

  Unilever PLC (ULVR) - 3rd Quarter Results

RNS Number : 4809P
Unilever PLC
25 October 2012




                                      

                UNILEVER TRADING STATEMENT THIRD QUARTER 2012

                                      

             SUSTAINED GROWTH MOMENTUM DRIVEN BY EMERGING MARKETS



Third quarter highlights

· Turnover increased by 10.3% to €13.4 billion with a positive impact of
4.1% from FX and 0.1% from M&A

· Underlying sales growth 5.9% with emerging markets up 12.1%

· Underlying volume growth 3.4% ahead of our markets; pricing up 2.4%



Nine months highlights

· Turnover increased by 11.1% to €38.8 billion with a positive impact of
2.6% from FX and 1.5% from M&A

· Underlying sales growth 6.6% with emerging markets up 11.7%

· Underlying volume growth 3.0% ahead of our markets; pricing up 3.5%



                Paul Polman: Chief Executive Officer statement



"I am pleased that we have again reported good quality growth, with volumes
ahead of our markets. This consistent performance, despite continued high
levels of competitive intensity, depressed economies and increasing global
imbalances and uncertainty, shows that the Unilever transformation is well on
track and is being embedded deeply in the business.



The Compass strategy and the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan are driving
aligned actions across the business. We are seeing a steady improvement in the
quality of our innovation, meeting the needs of consumers wherever they are.
The organisational structure that we announced last year is already paying off
and we are seeing benefits in terms of our agility and discipline in
operational execution.



I am particularly pleased with the progress that we have made in attracting
and retaining the best talent. This is increasingly being recognised
externally. For example we have won awards for diversity in China and Europe
and we were recently ranked as the world's fifth most desirable company to
work for in a survey by the Linkedin professional networking site. This is an
area where we see that a socially responsible approach brings a tangible
business benefit.



Looking forward, it is clear that the environment will remain challenging.
Commodity cost inflation is high and remains volatile and there is no sign
that the level of competition will ease. In this challenging environment there
is no change to our objectives, which remain: profitable volume growth ahead
of our markets, steady and sustainable core operating margin improvement and
strong cash flow. For 2012 we remain on track to deliver a modest improvement
in core operating margin"



25 October 2012



                        OPERATIONAL REVIEW: CATEGORIES





                  Third Quarter 2012       Nine Months 2012
(unaudited)   Turnover  USG   UVG  UPG Turnover USG   UVG  UPG
                 €bn      %     %    %    €bn     %     %    %
Unilever Total   13.4    5.9   3.4  2.4   38.8   6.6   3.0  3.5
Personal Care    4.7     8.0   5.6  2.3   13.4   9.5   6.3  3.1
Foods            3.6    (0.4) (1.4) 1.0   10.7   2.0  (1.2) 3.2
Home Care        2.4    11.0   7.0  3.8   6.8    10.2  5.9  4.1
Refreshment      2.7     6.8   3.3  3.4   7.9    5.5   1.4  4.1



Markets: Third quarter market growth was driven largely by higher prices.
Market volumes continued to grow in emerging markets whilst volumes in
developed markets remained below prior year.



Unilever Performance: Against this overall market backdrop we saw solid growth
with a good balance between volume and price. Our emerging markets businesses
delivered another quarter of double digit growth, taking year to date growth
to 11.7%. Developed markets declined in the quarter but are up 0.8% year to
date.



Personal Care



Hair performance reflected the success of a strong programme of activities
across the brands. Tresemmé did well in its traditional markets, made strong
headway in Brazil and has recently been launched in Indonesia and India. The
Clear launch in the United States is performing well, confirming that the
proposition is strong and differentiated, and the brand is also making inroads
into other new markets such as Australia. Dove Damage Therapy continues to
drive growth across many markets and Dove Men+Care hair was launched in
Brazil. Axe hair has established a good platform in Europe and was launched in
Turkey.



Deodorants grew ahead of our markets with a broad-based, good performance
across the key brands and geographies. Dove continued to deliver strong
growth and Rexona was underpinned by the extension of the MotionSense
technology to Rexona for Men. Axe benefited from strong digital campaigns and
Axe Anarchy, which offers fragrances for both him and her, continues to do
well.



Dove continues to drive skin cleansing growth with the continuing success of
Dove Nutrium Moisture and Dove Men+Care. Lifebuoy is progressing well driven
by the '10 seconds germ-removal' hand wash campaign supporting the launch of
Lifebuoy Clini-Care 10 in India and South Africa. Lux continues to deliver
double digit growth helped by the recent Fresh re-stage. Both Radox and
Duschdas, brands acquired from Sara Lee, are performing well. In skin care,
Vaseline Daily Care Total Moisture maintained good momentum whilst a Dove
Men+Care face range was launched in the United Kingdom. The acquired Kalina
brands in Russia performed strongly.



Oral improved its growth rate in the third quarter driven by the rollout of
Expert Protection in Signal / Pepsodent, our most advanced complete protection
toothpaste and '3x fresher breath' proposition for Close-up. Pepsodent 123 was
launched in Indonesia and Vietnam and we launched Pepsodent in South Africa.



Foods



Overall Foods growth was slightly negative. Knorr jelly bouillon continues to
do well in savoury, with the recent extension to markets such as Australia and
Russia and the introduction of new variants such as Herbs & Spices in Germany
and Borsch Soup in Russia. Knorr baking bags have gained share in most key
countries. During the third quarter we launched our first soup made from 100%
sustainable tomatoes in France.



Spreads volumes suffered from high relative pricing in key markets but we have
already taken action in some markets to ensure that our prices are competitive
and our volume market shares are improving as a result. Liquid margarines
continue to do well and Becel Gold, a premium variant offering a healthy
spread with a great creamy taste was launched in Europe. Hellmann's mayonnaise
is progressing well driven by the campaign to inspire new uses of mayonnaise
and the 50^th anniversary campaign in Brazil.



Home Care

Strong growth in laundry reflected volume growth ahead of our markets. This
includes the impact of improved product formulations, sustained innovation
delivery and effective brand communication. New Omo offering fast stain
removal has now been rolled out to more than 20 markets and is performing
well. Surf growth was driven by improved fragrances and its value for money
positioning. Comfort is building on the success of recent launches in
Australia, New Zealand and South Africa whilst Comfort Anti-Bacterial was
launched in Indonesia and Vietnam.



Household cleaners delivered double digit growth driven by a strong Sunlight
hand dishwash performance in South and South East Asia supported by the
improved degreasing formulation. Domestos continued to deliver robust growth
benefiting from the launches in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf and Argentina, the
successful Toilet System advertising in Europe and the joint promotion with
UNICEF to improve access to sanitation across nine countries. Cif Power
Naturals was launched in Turkey and Cif Cream pouches were introduced in South
East Asia to provide Cif cleaning performance at an affordable unit price.



Refreshment

Ice cream delivered strong growth, with positive volume and price. Magnum
growth accelerated as the brand was successfully launched in the Philippines
and Malaysia and it continues to do well in the United States and Indonesia.
Magnum Infinity has been rolled out across Europe, Turkey, Mexico and
Australia. Cornetto also had a good quarter, driven by growth in Asia, and Ben
& Jerry's benefited from the Greek Frozen Yogurt launch in North America and
Core Concoctions in Europe.



Beverages growth improved in the third quarter but still lags market growth.
Lipton delivered double digit growth in the Middle East and the relaunch of
Lipton Yellow Label in Russia with improved taste is doing well and is now
being rolled out to Poland. Growth in India was underpinned by a strong
performance of Brooke Bond. Ades soy-based drinks continued to make good
progress in Latin America with successful new flavours supported by impactful
advertising.



                       OPERATIONAL REVIEW: GEOGRAPHIES



                 Third Quarter 2012      Nine Months 2012
(unaudited)    Turnover USG  UVG  UPG  Turnover USG  UVG UPG
                 €bn     %    %    %     €bn     %    %   %
Unilever Total   13.4   5.9  3.4  2.4    38.8   6.6  3.0 3.5
Asia/AMET/RUB    5.3    10.7 6.2  4.3    15.3   10.9 5.7 4.9
The Americas     4.3    4.7  1.2  3.4    12.8   6.6  1.8 4.8
Europe           3.7    0.9  2.1 (1.2)   10.6   1.0  0.9 0.1



Asia/AMET/RUB

Strong growth in the quarter, ahead of our markets, with particularly good
performances in Vietnam, Pakistan, India and Indonesia. Our business in
Thailand is making good progress following the flooding last year. The
investments to build our businesses in China and Russia are delivering good
results. Whilst we saw good growth in South Africa and Ghana, overall
performance across Africa was mixed reflecting difficult economic situations
in markets such as Nigeria and Cote D'Ivoire.



The Americas

North America, adjusting for the impact of the sales brought forward into the
third quarter 2011, saw modest underlying sales growth with a good performance
in ice cream. The disposal of the North American frozen foods business was
completed on 20^th August.



Latin America grew by 13.7%, the fifth successive quarter of double digit
growth, with a good balance between price and volume growth. All the major
countries delivered strong growth with particularly good performances from
Brazil, Argentina and Chile. The integration of the acquired laundry business
in Colombia continues to progress well.



Europe

Europe delivered 0.9% growth in the quarter, consistent with the growth rate
in the first half year. Volume growth was again ahead of our markets.
Underlying price growth was negative largely as a result of the intensely
competitive, promotionally-driven markets. We are responding to the needs of
hard-pressed consumers in Europe, for example in Greece we have launched a
range of value priced products under the locally well-known Elaïs brand.



                              FINANCIAL POSITION



There has been no material change to Unilever's financial position since the
published 2012 interim financial statements.





                                  DIVIDENDS



The Boards have declared a quarterly interim dividend for Q3 2012 at the
following rates which are equivalent in value at the rate of exchange applied
under the terms of the Equalisation Agreement between the two companies:



Per Unilever N.V. ordinary share:             € 0.2430
Per Unilever PLC ordinary share:              £ 0.1977
Per Unilever N.V. New York share:             US$ 0.3160
Per Unilever PLC American Depositary Receipt: US$ 0.3160



The quarterly interim dividends have been determined in euros and converted
into equivalent sterling and US dollar amounts using exchange rates issued by
the European Central Bank on 23 October 2012.



The quarterly interim dividends will be payable as from 12 December 2012, to
shareholders registered at close of business on 9 November 2012. The shares
will go ex-dividend on 7 November 2012.



US dollar checks for the quarterly interim dividend will be mailed on 11
December 2012 to holders of record at the close of business on 9 November
2012. In the case of the N.V. New York shares, Netherlands withholding tax
will be deducted.





                             CAUTIONARY STATEMENT



Thisannouncementmay contain forward-looking statements, including
'forward-looking statements' within the meaning of the United States Private
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as 'will', 'aim',
'expects', 'anticipates', 'intends', 'believes', 'vision', or the negative of
these terms and other similar expressions of future performance or results,
and their negatives, are intended to identify such forward-looking statements.
These forward-looking statements are based upon current expectations and
assumptions regarding anticipated developments and other factors affecting the
Group. They are not historical facts, nor are they guarantees of future
performance.

Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties,
there are important factors that could cause actual results to differ
materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking
statements. Among other risks and uncertainties, the material or principal
factors which could cause actual results to differ materially are: Unilever's
global brands not meeting consumer preferences; increasing competitive
pressures; Unilever's investment choices in its portfolio management; finding
sustainable solutions to support long-term growth; customer relationships; the
recruitment and retention of talented employees; disruptions in our supply
chain; the cost of raw materials and commodities; secure and reliable IT
infrastructure; successful execution of acquisitions, divestitures and
business transformation projects; economic and political risks and national
disasters; the sovereign debt crisis in Europe; financial risks; failure to
meet high product safety and ethical standards; and managing regulatory, tax
and legal matters. Further details of potential risks and uncertainties
affecting the Group are described in the Group's filings with the London Stock
Exchange, Euronext Amsterdam and the US Securities and Exchange Commission,
including the Group's Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended 31
December 2011 and the Annual Report and Accounts 2011. These forward-looking
statements speak only as of the date of this announcement. Except as required
by any applicable law or regulation, the Group expressly disclaims any
obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any
forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in the
Group's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions
or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

                                  ENQUIRIES



Media: Media Relations Team                Investors: Investor Relations Team

UK +44 20 7822 6719  +44 20 7822 6830
trevor.gorin@unilever.com                  investor.relations@unilever.com

NL +31 10                                  
2174844
flip.dotsch@unilever.com                   





There will be a web cast of the results presentation available at:

www.unilever.com/ourcompany/investorcentre/results/quarterlyresults/default.asp



The web cast can also be viewed from the Unilever Investor Relations app which
you can download from:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/unilever-investor-centre-app/id483403509?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D4





                       SEGMENT INFORMATION - CATEGORIES



(unaudited)



                                Personal       Home
        Third Quarter                   Foods       Refreshment Total
                                  Care         Care
Turnover (€ million)
 2011    4,111 3,480 2,083       2,441 12,115
 2012                          4,731 3,559 2,381       2,693 13,364
Change (%)                          15.1   2.3  14.3        10.3   10.3
Impact of:
 Exchange rates (%)              5.2   4.8   3.6         1.6    4.1
 Acquisitions (%)                1.8   0.0   0.3         1.0    0.9
 Disposals (%)                 (0.5) (2.1) (1.0)         0.7  (0.8)
Underlying sales growth (%)          8.0 (0.4)  11.0         6.8    5.9
 Price (%)                       2.3   1.0   3.8         3.4    2.4
 Volume (%)                      5.6 (1.4)   7.0         3.3    3.4



                                Personal        Home
         Nine Months                    Foods        Refreshment Total
                                  Care          Care
Turnover (€ million)
 2011   11,347 10,314 6,101       7,141 34,903
 2012                         13,446 10,690 6,759       7,867 38,762
Change (%)                          18.5    3.6  10.8        10.2   11.1
Impact of:
 Exchange rates (%)              3.2    3.0   0.9         2.8    2.6
 Acquisitions (%)                5.4    0.0   0.8         0.9    2.1
 Disposals (%)                 (0.5)  (1.4) (1.1)         0.7  (0.6)
Underlying sales growth (%)          9.5    2.0  10.2         5.5    6.6
 Price (%)                       3.1    3.2   4.1         4.1    3.5
 Volume (%)                      6.3  (1.2)   5.9         1.4    3.0







                      SEGMENT INFORMATION - GEOGRAPHIES

(unaudited)



                                 Asia/AMET/   The
         Third Quarter                               Europe Total  
                                    RUB     Americas
                                                                   
Turnover (€ million)                                   
 2011      4,566    4,016  3,533 12,115 
 2012                             5,359    4,363  3,642 13,364 
                                                                   
Change (%)                             17.4      8.7    3.1   10.3 
Impact of:                                                         
 Exchange rates (%)                 4.6      5.4    1.9    4.1 
 Acquisitions (%)                   1.6      0.2    0.8    0.9 
 Disposals (%)                    (0.2)    (1.7)  (0.5)  (0.8) 
                                                                   
Underlying sales growth (%)            10.7      4.7    0.9    5.9 
 Price (%)                          4.3      3.4  (1.2)    2.4 
 Volume (%)                         6.2      1.2    2.1    3.4 





                                 Asia/AMET/
          Nine Months                       The Americas Europe Total  
                                    RUB
                                                                       
Turnover (€ million)                                       
 2011      13,263       11,384 10,256 34,903 
 2012                            15,336       12,842 10,584 38,762 
                                                                       
Change (%)                             15.6         12.8    3.2   11.1 
Impact of:                                                             
 Exchange rates (%)                 2.7          4.0    1.0    2.6 
 Acquisitions (%)                   1.8          2.8    1.8    2.1 
 Disposals (%)                    (0.2)        (1.1)  (0.6)  (0.6) 
                                                                       
Underlying sales growth (%)            10.9          6.6    1.0    6.6 
 Price (%)                          4.9          4.8    0.1    3.5 
 Volume (%)                         5.7          1.8    0.9    3.0 





                     Additional geographical information





                        Third Quarter              Nine Months
                  Turnover  USG   UVG   UPG  Turnover USG   UVG  UPG
                     €m      %     %     %      €m     %     %    %
Unilever Total      13,364  5.9   3.4   2.4    38,762 6.6   3.0  3.5
Developed markets    5,959 (1.2) (0.6) (0.6)   17,509 0.8  (0.3) 1.1
Emerging markets     7,405 12.1   6.8   4.9    21,253 11.7  5.9  5.5



                   Third Quarter             Nine Months
              Turnover  USG   UVG  UPG Turnover USG   UVG  UPG
                 €m      %     %    %     €m     %     %    %
The Americas   4,363    4.7   1.2  3.4  12,842  6.6   1.8  4.8
North America  2,236   (3.5) (4.4) 1.0  6,707   1.4  (1.9) 3.3
Latin America  2,127   13.7   7.5  5.8  6,135   12.3  5.7  6.3



                     This information is provided by RNS
           The company news service from the London Stock Exchange

END


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