Universal Robina profit up 4.3% to Php6.49 B

By Leslie D. Venzon

MANILA, May 6 (PNA) — Profits of snack and beverage giant Universal Robina Corp. (URC) surged 4.3 percent in the first half of fiscal year 2015 ending March on higher sales of branded products.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, URC said its net income reached Php6.49 billion compared to Php6.2 billion the previous year.

“Growth was slower than operating income as we booked higher net finance cost, equity share in net losses of joint ventures we started namely Calbee-URC, Inc. and Danone Universal Robina Beverages, Inc. and unrealized foreign exchange losses,” the company said.

Philippine-branded consumer foods (BCF) business increased sales by 15.7 percent, while internationally branded consumer foods recorded a 37.8-percent growth with the consolidation of Griffin’s New Zealand results starting mid-November upon closing of the acquisition.

Sales of its non-branded consumer foods group surged by 16.9 percent for the first half of fiscal year 2015 due to increase in sales volume for sugar and feeds which grew 61.1 percent and 19.6 percent, respectively.

URC’s branded consumer foods (BCF) group, including the packaging division, increased sales of goods and services by 22.6 percent to Php 46.41 billion from Php37.84 billion.

BCF Philippines recorded buoyant sales growth of 15.7 percent in the first half of fiscal year 2015, amounting to Php29.65 billion from Php25.62 billion in the prior year.

The company said beverage remained to be the main driver, backed by the continued growth, followed by snackfoods segment.

URC’s International BCF business registered sales of Php16.21 billion for the first half of fiscal year 2015, up by 37.8 percent.

Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia contributed to the strong top-line growth.

“We have also started consolidating Griffin’s into URC International starting mid-November upon closing of the acquisition,” URC said. (PNA)