Unilever share price surges as Q2 sales top estimates

on Jul 23, 2015
Updated: Oct 21, 2019

Unilever’s (LON:ULVR) share price rose almost three percent this morning, after the consumer goods maker reported better than expected interim sales growth and maintained its full-year outlook.

The Anglo-Dutch maker of Dove soap, Lipton tea and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream said in a statement this morning that underlying sales had grown 2.9 percent in the three months to the end of June, beating the company-compiled consensus expectation of 2.6 percent. Buoyed by a positive currency impact of 9.6 percent, total sales growth for the quarter rose 11.8 percent to €14.19 billion, versus expectations of a 10.4 percent improvement.

In the first half of the year, Unilever’s underlying sales growth was also 2.9 percent, exceeding a consensus 2.7 percent estimate, while total revenue rose 12 percent to €27 billion, in line with forecasts. However, operating profit was down 13 percent to €3.8 billion and net profit down 11 percent to €2.7 billion, weighed down by sluggish growth in the group’s mature markets such as Europe and the US.
“The sharpened strategies across each of our four categories and a step-up in our innovation pipeline are increasingly driving our growth and margin expansion in a continued challenging environment,” Unilever CEO Paul Polman said. Looking forward he added: “We plan for another year of volume growth ahead of our markets, steady improvement in core operating margin and strong cash flow.”
The company’s chief financial officer, Jean Marc Huet, told Reuters that the group’s outlook remained unchanged, with full-year sales growth expected to come in at the upper end of its previously stated goal of between two and four percent.
Investors have hailed Unilever’s report, sending the shares as much as three percent higher in early trading today. As of 09:48 BST, the stock was changing hands at 2,921.00p — 2.10 percent up intraday.
As of 10:04 BST, Thursday, 23 July, Unilever plc share price is 2,920.00p.

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