CFDs are a leveraged product and can result in losses that exceed deposits. Please ensure you fully understand how CFDs work and what their risks are, and take care to manage your exposure. CFDs are a leveraged product and can result in losses that exceed deposits. Please ensure you fully understand how CFDs work and what their risks are, and take care to manage your exposure.

Unilever (LON:ULVR) share price up 3% as emerging market growth lifts sales

The British-Dutch consumer goods company saw its share price rise after unveiling strong emerging market growth helped boost sales in its Q1 trading update.

Unilever (LON:ULVR) saw its share price rally more than 3% on Thursday morning after it started the year on a high, unveiling strong emerging market growth that helped boost sales in its Q1 trading results.

‘We have delivered a solid start that keeps us on track for our full year expectations,’ Unilever CEO Alan Jope said. ‘Growth was led by emerging markets and was balanced between volume and price.’

Unilever results: key figures

Unilever saw underlying sales growth of 3.1% with the company recording a 1.2% increase in sales volumes and 1.9% increase in prices.

Emerging markets were responsible for the lion share of its sales growth, with the segment seeing a 5% rise, helping the company increase its revenues by 1.6%.

‘Accelerating growth is our number one priority,’ Jope said. ‘It requires both great execution and a continued strategic shift into faster growth segments and channels.’

‘We saw good performance in key growth channels including out of home and e-commerce and benefited from stronger global innovations and faster and more relevant local innovation,’ he added.

Following its strong start to 2019, the company announced a 1.6% increase to its quarterly dividend to €0.4104 a share.

Unilever on pace to hit 2019 targets

For the full year the company expects underlying sales growth to come in the lower half of its multi-year 3% - 5% range, representing the improvement the business has seen in its underlying operating margin, helping Unilever stay on track to hit its 2020 target and record another year of strong free cash flow.

Emerging markets improved slightly compared with the Q4 last year, led by South East Asia and Brazil. In India markets grew well albeit slightly slower than the Q4, with high inflation weighing on global market volume growth. Unilever admitted that growth remains weak in developed markets.

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