Nestle reports FY17 reported sales CHF89.8B vs. CHF89.5B last year
Underlying trading operating profit margin ahead of expectations, up 50 basis points in constant currency and up 40 basis points on a reported basis to 16.4%. Trading operating profit margin decreased by 60 basis points on a reported basis to 14.7%, in line with October 2017 expectations. This included a CHF 900 million increase mainly in restructuring and related costs to CHF 1.5 billion. Underlying earnings per share increased by 4.7% in constant currency and by 4.6% to CHF 3.55 on a reported basis. Mark Schneider, Nestle CEO, said: "Our 2017 organic sales growth was within the guided range but below our expectations, in particular due to weak sales development towards the end of the year. Sales growth in Europe and Asia was encouraging while North America and Brazil continued to see a challenging environment. Our cost reduction initiatives delivered margin improvement ahead of 2017 expectations, in spite of considerable commodity price increases. During the past months, we have completed initial portfolio adjustments with very favorable results. We will continue this active portfolio management approach in a disciplined manner and fully in line with our strategy. Regarding our core portfolio, accelerating our growth through product innovation and renovation is high on the agenda. Organic sales growth is expected to improve in 2018 and we are firmly on track for our 2020 margin improvement target."