Nestle makes $11.55 billion profit in 2012
VEVEY, Switzerland (AP) – Nestle SA, the world’s biggest food and drinks maker, predicted another challenging year ahead but overcame tough global economic conditions to post a full-year net profit Thursday of 10.6 billion Swiss francs ($11.55 billion) for 2012.
The maker of Nescafe, Perrier, Jenny Craig, Haagen Dazs and Carnation reported broad-based growth across all product ranges and regions with sales reaching 92.2 billion francs ($100.5 billion), up from 83.6 billion francs ($91.11 billion) in 2011. But the Vevey-based company said in a statement that “the environment looks to be every bit as challenging in 2013 as it was in 2012.”
The results compare with a full-year 2011 profit of 9.5 billion Swiss francs ($10.35 billion). With 330,000 employees worldwide and 461 factories in 83 countries, Nestle is a major buyer of food commodities such as wheat, sugar, milk and coffee and its results are a good indicator of consumer demand and the health of the global economy as a whole.
“This year was not a walk in the park,” said Chief Financial Officer Wan Ling Martello, who noted that Nestle had its slowest growth in Europe in the face of some shrinking local economies. “Even so, we delivered good top-line results.”
Nestle said its sales growth rebounded during the last three months of 2012 and that it strengthened its standing as a seller of premium nutritional and health products. Over the course of 2012, the company acquired Pfizer’s infant nutrition business Wyeth Nutrition, inaugurated its Nestle Institute of Health Sciences in Lausanne, Switzerland, and added two new research and development units in China.