The management of Unilever Ghana Ltd says it is confident of good performance in 2017 which would return the company to healthy growth in both revenue and profit.
This, the company said, would be achieved through expansion of outlets and other alternative channels to get closer to consumers.
“We are happy to report that we closed the year 2016 with growth in profit before and after tax, we also recognised the decline in revenue because of volume lost in a highly competitive market,” Mr Ziobeieton Yeo, the Managing Director of Unilever Ghana, told shareholders at the company’s annual general meeting in Accra.
Unilever Ghana posted a profit after tax of GHȼ39.05 million, representing a 9.4 per cent increase over 2015 profit of Ghȼ35.71 million, despite a decline in turnover.
The company’s revenue declined by 4.32 per cent to GHȼ496.31 million against GHȼ518.73 same period 2015.
“The general liquidity challenges which affected our revenue mobilisation accounted for the reduction in the cash and cash equivalents at the year end as compared to the same period 2015,” he said.
Mr Yeo said Unilever continued to maintain leadership positions across categories in home and personal care.
In the home care category, laundry bars took 62.1 per cent share, personal care grew by seven per cent while the oral segment registered a strong growth largely driven by Pepsodent.
“In 2017, the business will focus on driving more growth across category segments. Some of the growth drivers will be through innovations, consumer and trade relevant promotions,” he said.
Mr Yeo said the company would also turn around the range of skin cleansing and deodorants product line in 2017.
He said the company would continue to prioritise investments, adding that investments of more than GHȼ30 million undertaken covered more energy efficient dryers and the automation of the packing operations.
Mr Yeo said as the Government continued with efforts to create a conducive business environment, Unilever’s ‘Connected for Growth’ strategy with greater customer focus and operational intensity.
“Trends of results from our operations so far indicate that we have taken all the right strategic decisions and thus we are on the right path to deliver strong and healthy growth,” he said.
Mr Edward Effah, the Board Chairman, said he was hopeful of a continued stable economy and conducive environment to do business, adding that Unilever would continue to work towards building a sustainable business which would create wealth and adequate returns to shareholders while providing relevant solutions to customers.
Shareholders approved a proposed dividend payout of GHȼ0.05 per share, amounting to GHȼ3.13 million.