Five key platforms identified to drive long-term sustainability strategy

MUMBAI: Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant Unilever has increased its stake in its Indian subsidiary Hindustan Unilever (HUL) to 52.12 per cent from 51.40 per cent through a buyback of shares, a top company official said here on Friday. HUL bought back shares worth Rs. 626.27 crore at an average price of Rs. 207.13 per share.

“Unilever has increased its stake in Hindustan Unilever to 52.12 per cent from 51.40 per cent after the recent buyback offer,” HUL Chairman Harish Manwani told shareholders at the company’s 75th annual general meeting here.

“HUL, being a part of Unilever, a $55-billion company with operations in 100 countries, has a distinct advantage. In 2005, Unilever embarked on a new business model — One Unilever — that leverages our global scale with sharper strategic clarity and focus on operational excellence,” he said.

Mr. Manwani spoke on how global scale and know-how were key to winning in an increasingly globalised and competitive landscape.

HUL has identified five key platforms to drive its long-term sustainability strategy.

“We have made specific choices which are based on the needs of the nation and the capabilities and skills we can bring to bear on these. We have identified five key platforms and have articulated goals, both short term and long term goals, stretching to 2015,” Mr. Manwani said.

On the five key platforms, Mr. Manwani said the company would work in areas of health, nutrition and women empowerment on the social front while the economic agenda would be to enhance livelihoods. The environmental agenda would focus on water conservation and cutting green house gases.

On the impact of rising inflation, he said, “commodity cost inflation is a big issue and our company works hard to make sure we are able to be cost-efficient in our operations.”

“We also judiciously take price increases which we do because our brands happens to be preferred brands by our consumers.” — PTI