Nestle India posted a net profit of ₹655.61 crore in the December quarter, up 4.4 per cent over ₹628.06 crore in the same period of the previous year. The company’s sales were up 8.3 per cent to ₹4,583.63 crore.

The company’s board declared a third interim dividend for the financial year of ₹7 per equity share amounting to ₹674.91 crore.

Suresh Narayanan, Chairman and Managing Director, Nestle India, said that domestic sales grew 8.9 per cent on the back of pricing and mix growth, with strong growth momentum in e-commerce and out-of-home channels. “All key brands and product groups contributed to Nestlé India’s consistent growth trajectory. Our beverages business witnessed a double-digit growth and Nescafe gained significant market share. The Milk and Nutrition product group posted double-digit growth. Prepared Dishes and Cooking Aids also maintained creditable growth this quarter. Confectionery, one of our strong growth drivers, also delivered good growth.”

rurban strategies

The company said it witnessed an uptick in sales in its ‘rurban’ markets despite the challenging environment. “Our rurban strategies of creating portfolio, infrastructure analytic platforms, and activation has supported deeper penetration and distribution expansion that we have witnessed. We expanded our direct coverage and added 5,300 villages this quarter, reaching a total of over 196,000 villages, close to 200,000 villages, which was our ambition,” he added.

Narayanan said out-of-home business continued to accelerate rapidly during the quarter on the back of relevant innovations, potential geographies and robust penetration in emerging channels. Meanwhile, e-commerce delivered strong growth contributing to 7 per cent of domestic sales in this quarter. Organised trade also witnessed strong growth backed by festive walk-ins and new product launches, he added.

The company said coffee prices continue to be volatile and are historically high due to limited availability. “Healthy milk flush in winter is expected to keep prices stable. Commodities such as wheat and rice are stable as of now. Rain deficit is expected to impact the production of maize, sugar, oil seeds and spices that may impact pricing,” Nestle India noted.

Nestle India’s net profit for the full year of 2023 was up 25.44 per cent at ₹2,998.67 crore. Total sales grew 13.3 per cent to ₹19,021.05 crore.

Recent launches

The company’s recent launches included Maggi Korean noodles, Oats Noodles with Millet Magic and Gerber Puffs. “We have piloted, through a limited period menu, Maggi Professional’s new plant-based range consisting of burger patty and mince with a committed and competent partner,” he added. Meanwhile, the company added that it has received land allotment letter from the government for its 10th factory at Odisha.

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The company, which used to follow the January-December period as the financial year, said it now stands changed to April 1-March 31 cycle. “ Accordingly, the current Financial Year of the Company stands extended up to 31st March 2024 covering a period of 15 months commencing from 1st January 2023 to 31st March 2024,” it added.

Meanwhile, the company’s board on Wednesday approved the slump sale of Nestle Business Service Division to Purina PetCare India, a 100 per cent subsidiary of Nestle SA, for an aggregate consideration of ₹79.8 crore. “The transaction shall be effective from July 1, 2024, subject to customary closing conditions. The company will continue to receive the services of NBS Division at an arm’s length basis and expects to improve its operational efficiencies, cost optimisation, automation and other benefits from the proposed enhanced business services operations,” the statement said.