Wipro Consumer Care and Lighting (WCCL) said that acquisitions have helped expand the company’s margins as well as brands grow and achieve the top five positions in the categories they are present in.

“We are always working on acquisitions. We are looking at developing countries such as Africa and Middle East for inorganic growth,” said Vineet Agarwal, President, Wipro Consumers.

WCCL, part of the Azim Premji-led diversified conglomerate Wipro, has in the last few years acquired domestic brands such as Chandrika, Aramusk and Moloy (soaps), the UK-based Yardley (perfumes and talcum), Singapore-based Unza Holdings which makes shampoos, creams, lotions and detergents under brands such as Enchanteur, Safi, Romano and Vigor. Last year, it acquired Cleanray in LED lightings

Yardley grew 53 per cent and 28 per cent in India and Europe respectively. International business grew 17 per cent while the domestic market grew 25 per cent. In terms of India, Santoor grew 22 per cent to become a Rs 1,000-crore brand.

The Bangalore-based firm reported a 26 per cent growth in revenues at Rs 1,007 crore and the margins grew 29 per cent in the second quarter of this fiscal as against the year ago period. WCCL currently accounts for 9 per cent of Wipro’s topline and 6 per cent of its operating income at Rs 3,340 crore and Rs 395.6 crore, respectively.

Within the institutional business comprising lighting and office furniture, the company witnessed a flat growth in the commercial lighting segment due to slowdown in demand for new offices and houses.

On demerger, Agarwal said that the new company Wipro Enterprises would come into existence from the first quarter of FY14. ‘The demerger will help the company diversify into new categories. There will be a separate management, and will help it grow as a leading FMCG firm,’ said Sanjeev Hota, analyst at Sharekhan

Priyanka.pani@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on November 2, 2012)
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