Emerging markets’ growth push Unilever revenue by 3.1%


London-based Unilever Plc said its revenue for the first nine months of the year was boosted by 3.1% as a result of significant growth in emerging markets.

However, the company’s turnover for the third quarter decreased by 1.6% as well as negative currency impact of 5.1%
Underlying sales growth was 2.6% in the third quarter, with price up 2.4% and volume up 0.2%

Growth in the quarter was adversely affected by poorer weather in Europe and natural disasters in the Americas
Emerging markets underlying sales growth was 6.3% in the third quarter, with volume up 1.8%.

Commenting on the results, CEO Paul Polman says: “The transformation of Unilever into a more resilient, more competitive and more profitable business continues and we are making good progress against the strategic objectives we have set out for 2020. The ‘Connected 4 Growth’ change programme is beginning to make our business less complex and more responsive to fast-changing consumer trends. The new organisation is delivering increased innovation speed and our savings programmes are allowing us to step up investment behind new growth opportunities. We expect to reap the benefits over the coming quarters.

“While conditions in our developed markets remain challenging, we are starting to see signs of improvement in some of our biggest emerging markets including India and China. Growth in the third quarter was adversely affected by poorer weather in Europe compared with last year and natural disasters in the Americas.

“For the full year, we continue to expect underlying sales growth within the 3–5% range, an improvement in underlying operating margin of at least 100 basis points and strong cash flow.”