Consumer goods company Hindustan Unilever Limited has announced its results for the quarter and year ending March 31, 2021, reporting strong broad-based performance.
Growth in the quarter was competitive and profitable with reported turnover growth of 34% and profit after tax growth of 41%. Domestic consumer growth* was at 21% with underlying volume growth of 16%.
Health, hygiene and nutrition that formed 80% of business grew in double-digits for the third consecutive quarter, while discretionary and out-of-home categories improved sequentially.
Home care growth at 15% was enabled by a strong recovery in fabric wash. Household care continued its strong performance, delivering double-digit growth. Liquids and fabric sensations continue to outperform, benefitting from robust market development initiatives.
Beauty and personal care grew 20% with skin cleansing, hair care and oral care delivering high double-digit growths. Skin cleansing performance was led by ‘Lifebuoy’ and premium segment. A calibrated approach towards price increase has helped protect its business model even as vegetable oils continue to inflate at record levels. Consumer-focused innovations and contextual communications in hair and oral care continue to yield good results. The skin care portfolio registered strong performance in the hand and body care and face cleansing segments. Colour cosmetics performance improved sequentially.
Foods and refreshment delivered another quarter of strong performance and grew at 36%. All the tea brands continued to grow in high double-digits. Ketchups, soups and ice-creams performed well with double-digit growth. Ice-cream recovery in the quarter was aided by multiple product innovations. Nutrition volumes grew in double digits and the company launched Rs 2 sachets in Horlicks and Boost.
Growth remained competitive and profitable in the financial year 2020-21, the company said. Turnover at Rs 45,311 crore grew by 18% while domestic consumer growth* was 6%. Profit after tax at Rs 7,954 crore was up 18%.
Sanjiv Mehta, Chairman and Managing Director, said, “Our in-quarter performance was strong on both the top-line and bottom-line. Despite challenging times, in FY’21, our business ecosystem withstood the disruption and demonstrated agility and resilience across the value chain. We delivered on our multi-stakeholder business model. Our purpose-led brands and capabilities were further strengthened during the year and this positions us well to serve our consumers during this turbulent period. Our focus firmly remains behind delivering volume led competitive growth. The recent surge in Covid cases is of serious concern and ensuring safety and wellbeing of people remains our top priority. We will continue to work closely with governments, health authorities and our partners to support the needs of the society and the nation to overcome this adversity.”
(* excluding the impact of merger of GSK CH and acquisition of ‘VWash’)