Food beverage giant- Nestle Nigeria Plc, on Tuesday, presented its un-audited 9-month financials for the period ended September 30, 2019, indicating a sluggish growth in earnings, while profit inched 11%, despite which the directors increased interim dividend payout by 40% from N21.798bn in 2018 to N30.517bn.
Specifically, income from sales for the period climbed to N211.347bn from N203.134bn, with the food segment contributing the lion’s share of N131.801bn, slightly more than the N129.069bn in the prior nine months; followed by the N79.546bn from the beverage segment, compared to N74.065bn.
The cost of sales dropped marginally to N115.034bn from N116.984bn; resulting in gross profit of N96.312bn, up from N86.149bn.
Marketing and distribution expenses rose from N29.739bn to N32.311bn; administrative expenses dropped from N7.05bn to N6.95bn; following which operating profit stood at N57.049bn, as against the previous N49.36bn.
Finance income dropped from N1.389bn to N1.076bn, being interest income on bank deposits; finance costs dropped to N1.572bn from N2.661bn, the bulk of which was the N1.548bn interest expense on financial liabilities, from N2.565bn; and net foreign exchange dropped from N96.067m to N24.162m. This left N496.247m in net finance cost, compared to N1.271bn in the preceding period.
Profit before tax stood at N56.553bn, compared to the previous N48.088bn, out of which N37.362bn came from the food segment, compared to N35.883bn; just as contributed N19.687bn, up from N13.476bn. Income tax increased by N4.742bn or 31.67%; resulting in net profit of N36.841bn, as against the previous N33.118bn, translating to earnings per share of N46.48; up from N41.78 per share; out which the directors will pay an interim dividend of N25 per share. While the register of shareholders closes between November 25 an 29, the qualification date is on November 22, following which payment will be made electronically on December 9, 2019.