Financial Express (Holdings) Limited (“we”, “our”, “us” and derivatives) are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. This Privacy Policy, together with our Terms of Use, sets out the basis on which any personal data that we collect from you, or that you provide to us, will be processed by us relating to your use of any of the below websites (“sites”).

  • FEAnalytics.com
  • FEInvest.net
  • FETransmission.com
  • Investegate.co.uk
  • Trustnet.hk
  • Trustnetoffshore.com
  • Trustnetmiddleeast.com

For the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1998, the data controller is Trustnet Limited of 2nd Floor, Golden House, 30 Great Pulteney Street, London, W1F 9NN. Our nominated representative for the purpose of this Act is Kirsty Witter.

WHAT INFORMATION DO WE COLLECT ABOUT YOU?

We collect information about you when you register with us or use any of our websites / services. Part of the registration process may include entering personal details & details of your investments.

We may collect information about your computer, including where available your operating system, browser version, domain name and IP address and details of the website that you came from, in order to improve this site.

You confirm that all information you supply is accurate.

COOKIES

In order to provide personalised services to and analyse site traffic, we may use a cookie file which is stored on your browser or the hard drive of your computer. Some of the cookies we use are essential for the sites to operate and may be used to deliver you different content, depending on the type of investor you are.

You can block cookies by activating the setting on your browser which allows you to refuse the setting of all or some cookies. However, if you use your browser settings to block all cookies (including essential cookies) you may not be able to access all or part of our sites. Unless you have adjusted your browser setting so that it will refuse cookies, our system will issue cookies as soon as you visit our sites.

HOW WE USE INFORMATION

We store and use information you provide as follows:

  • to present content effectively;
  • to provide you with information, products or services that you request from us or which may interest you, tailored to your specific interests, where you have consented to be contacted for such purposes;
  • to carry out our obligations arising from any contracts between you and us;
  • to enable you to participate in interactive features of our service, when you choose to do so;
  • to notify you about changes to our service;
  • to improve our content by tracking group information that describes the habits, usage, patterns and demographics of our customers.

We may also send you emails to provide information and keep you up to date with developments on our sites. It is our policy to have instructions on how to unsubscribe so that you will not receive any future e-mails. You can change your e-mail address at any time.

In order to provide support on the usage of our tools, our support team need access to all information provided in relation to the tool.

We will not disclose your name, email address or postal address or any data that could identify you to any third party without first receiving your permission.

However, you agree that we may disclose to any regulatory authority to which we are subject and to any investment exchange on which we may deal or to its related clearing house (or to investigators, inspectors or agents appointed by them), or to any person empowered to require such information by or under any legal enactment, any information they may request or require relating to you, or if relevant, any of your clients.

You agree that we may pass on information obtained under Money Laundering legislation as we consider necessary to comply with reporting requirements under such legislation.

ACCESS TO YOUR INFORMATION AND CORRECTION

We want to ensure that the personal information we hold about you is accurate and up to date. You may ask us to correct or remove information that is inaccurate.

You have the right under data protection legislation to access information held about you. If you wish to receive a copy of any personal information we hold, please write to us at 3rd Floor, Hollywood House, Church Street East, Woking, GU21 6HJ. Any access request may be subject to a fee of £10 to meet our costs in providing you with details of the information we hold about you.

WHERE WE STORE YOUR PERSONAL DATA

The data that we collect from you may be transferred to, and stored at, a destination outside the European Economic Area (“EEA”). It may be processed by staff operating outside the EEA who work for us or for one of our suppliers. Such staff may be engaged in, amongst other things, the provision of support services. By submitting your personal data, you agree to this transfer, storing and processing. We will take all steps reasonably necessary, including the use of encryption, to ensure that your data is treated securely and in accordance with this privacy policy.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will do our best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to our sites; any transmission is at your own risk. You will not hold us responsible for any breach of security unless we have been negligent or in wilful default.

CHANGES TO OUR PRIVACY POLICY

Any changes we make to our privacy policy in the future will be posted on this page and, where appropriate, notified to you by e-mail.

OTHER WEBSITES

Our sites contain links to other websites. If you follow a link to any of these websites, please note that these websites have their own privacy policies and that we do not accept any responsibility or liability for these policies. Please check these policies before you submit any personal data to these websites.

CONTACT

If you want more information or have any questions or comments relating to our privacy policy please email publishing@financialexpress.net in the first instance.

 Information  X 
Enter a valid email address

Unilever PLC (ULVR)

  Print      Mail a friend       Annual reports

Wednesday 19 December, 2001

Unilever PLC

Q4 Pre-Close Presentation

Unilever PLC
Unilever NV.
19 December 2001

Release: Immediate

                     UNILEVER TELECONFERENCE PRESENTATION

The following is the presentation text for the Unilever pre-close
teleconference, given by Howard Green, head of investor relations, at 1400 hrs
GMT today, December 19 2001.

The purpose of this conference call is to update the market on the progress of
our business and is a precursor to our 'close' period, ahead of the fourth
quarter results announcement on February 14 2002.

This update is based on the first two months of trading in the quarter. Let me
start by updating you on the two key elements of our original outlook
statement namely EPS growth and growth of our leading brands.

EPS Growth

Firstly, we expect fourth quarter earnings per share before exceptional items
and goodwill amortisation to be ahead by around 35% which is consistent with
the achievement of our full year target growth rate of low double digits.

Within this we expect operating margin before exceptional items and goodwill
amortisation to be ahead by over 250 bps which reflects the ongoing
contribution from Path to Growth procurement and restructuring and Bestfoods
integration programmes. For the year we expect operating margin beia to be
ahead by around 170 bps.

We estimate associated costs, included in operating profit before exceptional
items and goodwill amortisation, to be around Euro80 million in the quarter,
bringing the annual total to around Euro350 million. Associated costs were
Euro173 million in 2000 with Euro133 million in the fourth quarter.

We continue to see a benefit in advertising and promotion in line with the
level we saw last quarter through lower media rates, internal productivity
measures and the inclusion of Bestfoods within our overall media buying
programme.

Growth of leading brands

Secondly, in respect of our leading brands we expect growth for the year to be
around 5%, showing clear momentum over the 3.8% achieved in 2000. This measure
now includes the growth rate of the former Bestfoods leading brands in the
fourth quarter as we reach a full year under Unilever's management.

If we look at the growth of leading brands in the fourth quarter then in Foods
we are seeing a continuing improvement in the growth profile of our business.
This is being driven by a good contribution from the former Bestfoods brands
notwithstanding the easier comparator as we come off the Q3 2000 trade load.
We also have momentum from Spreads and Tea in Europe, Spreads in the United
States, Slim.Fast and from Ice Cream. Sales have also been boosted by pricing
action as we draw back the adverse gross margin effect that we saw in quarter
three.

In Home and Personal Care we see strong growth in our European business and
broad based growth from our leading Personal Care brands. In the quarter we
also see similar short term influences on sales growth to those that we talked
about with last quarter's results:

  * Firstly, as we expected we are experiencing softer Prestige Fragrance
    sales with an underlying sales decline of some 20% projected for the
    quarter. This is equivalent to some Euro 70 million of sales.
  * Secondly, we continue to see the trade off with volume as we recover
    margin in key Developing and Emerging markets which have experienced
    devaluation.

So, in summary, we expect Home and Personal Care to show an increased growth
rate for the full year, but with a slower growth rate in the quarter due to
the short term influences of Prestige and Developing and Emerging markets.
Taking this together with the improved growth profile of Foods, we expect
leading brands in the quarter to grow between 4 and 4.5%.

We expect underlying sales growth for the year to be close to 4% with around
3% in the fourth quarter. Within the fourth quarter we expect a continuing
strong contribution from price:

  * firstly, in our developing and emerging market branded businesses where
    we seek to recover the cost increases mentioned earlier. Whilst this again
    has a short term effect on volumes we know that this is a necessary but
    also brief phase our business will go through on the way to full margin
    restoration.
  * and secondly, in the non-branded tail of businesses such as commodity
    edible oils and which also has a consequent negative effect on underlying
    volume as we pursue strategies to harvest value;

Including the effect of disposals we expect total sales in the quarter to
decline by around 1%. In the fourth quarter the disposal effect is made up of
Elizabeth Arden, the brands sold to Campbell's, the sale of Gorton's and a
number of other smaller transactions. The combined loss of sales from all
these disposals represents Euro550 million in the quarter.

Review of Regions

Let me now take you on a very short tour of our regions starting first with
Europe. The operating margins quoted are all beia.

In Europe we expect underlying sales growth of some 4% offset by disposals of
just over 6%. Operating margin is expected to be ahead by around 350 bps.

In North America sales are expected to be down by between 5 and 6% of which
disposals amount to some 4%. Operating margin is expected to be ahead by
around 250 bps.

In Africa and the Middle East, we expect sales to move ahead by some 3% with
underlying sales growth of 9% being offset by a disposal effect of just under
6%. Operating margin is expected to be up by around 50 bps.

In Asia Pacific a disposal effect of around 1.5% partly offsets underlying
sales growth of 4% to give total sales progression of just under 3%. Operating
margin is expected to move ahead by over 300 bps.

In Latin America total sales are expected to be ahead by around 4% with a
strong contribution from price more than offsetting underlying volume
declines. Operating margin is expected to be ahead by a little over 50 bps.

P&L Account

Finally, let me turn to the other elements of the Profit and Loss account.

Goodwill amortisation is estimated to be Euro355 million in the quarter.

Net interest is estimated at Euro400 million.

Exceptional items for the quarter for Path to Growth and the Bestfoods
integration are forecast to be around Euro800 million before tax and around
Euro560 million after tax.

We expect the underlying tax rate in the quarter to be between 32 and 33% and
I would like to remind you that Bestfoods goodwill is not tax deductible.

The number of shares for calculating the full year EPS is 983 million NV
equivalent share units or 6.55 billion if you take the PLC equivalent share
units.

Summary

So in summary business conditions in the second half of the year have
certainly been more challenging than we had anticipated at the start of the
year. However, our business is again showing its natural resilience. This has
then been further strengthened by the Path to Growth programme and it is
through this combination, allied with our renowned strength for successfully
managing our operations through periods of economic difficulty that we remain
confident of delivering our low double digit earnings per share growth target
in 2001.

                                     Oooo

SAFE HARBOUR STATEMENT: This presentation may contain forward-looking
statements (within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation
Reform Act 1995) based on our best current information and what we believe to
be reasonable assumptions about anticipated developments. Words such as
'expects', 'anticipates', 'intends' and other similar expressions are intended
to identify such forward looking-statements. Because of the risks and
uncertainties that always exist in any operating environment or business we
cannot give any assurance that the expectations reflected in these statements
will prove correct. Actual results and developments may differ materially
depending upon, among other factors, currency values, competitive pricing,
consumption levels, costs, environmental risks, physical risks, risks related
to the integration of acquisitions, legislative, fiscal and regulatory
developments and political and social conditions in the economies and
environments where Unilever operates. Further details of these potential risks
and uncertainties are given in the Unilever Annual Report and Accounts and
Form 20-F 2000. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these
forward-looking statements.

                                    -o0o-

December 19 2001