URC income up 15% to P11.6 billion

Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) - March 4, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Gokongwei-owned snack foods giant Universal Robina Corp. (URC) reported a 15 percent growth in net income last year to P11.6 billion on higher operating income, lower debt and interest expenses.

The latest results were also driven by lower foreign exchange losses, URC disclosed yesterday.

URC president and CEO Irwin Lee said the best response to the challenges the company faced was to push forward, not to pull back.

“Consumption of our products is not likely to dissipate, in fact, the relevance of our categories in consumers’ lives potentially increases as we adjust to changing consumer and shopper trends. As we look to the future and the new normal, we remain well-positioned for the long term to delight everyone with good food choices,” Lee said.

Net sales reached P133.1 billion, while operating income rose seven percent to P16 billion.

Sales of domestic and international branded consumer foods amounted to P103.6 billion.

Domestic revenues were flat at P61.2 billion as growth of snacks, noodles and other filler type categories were able to offset the decline of out-of-home consumption categories such as RTD beverages and candies.

In the international market, revenues hit P41.2 billion, five percent lower versus last year in peso terms, but flat in local currency basis. Growth in Oceania was able to offset the slower recovery of other ASEAN markets.

Sales of agro-industrial and commodities businesses, meanwhile, rose by seven percent to P29.6 billion.

The commodities foods group posted strong growth of 21 percent, with sugar and renewables (SURE) growing 33 percent.

A major contributor to the growth of this segment was the acquisition of Central Azucarera de La Carlota and Roxol Bioenergy Corp. from Roxas Holdings Inc.

However, sales of the agro-industrial group declined by 10 percent due to the downsizing of its hog farming operations.

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