United Spirits will be looking for profit leaps this year to pull back on H1

United Spirits will be looking for profit leaps this year to pull back on H1

United Spirits has posted rises in both sales and profits for its second fiscal quarter, but a slide in profits in the first three months of 2010 has held the company back in its half-year.

Net sales for the Indian firm in the three months to the end of September came in 26% up year-on-year at INR13.65bn (US$305.8m), United Spirits confirmed yesterday (27 October). Net profits, meanwhile, rose to INR746m from INR696m in Q2 2009-2010.

Volumes continued to rise in the quarter, leaping by 16% to 26.6m cases.

For the first half of United's financial year, however, the drop in net profits in the first quarter – thanks to a one-off gain from the sale of shares in Q1 2008-2009 – served to drag on profits. For the first six months of the company's financial year, net profits totalled INR1.96bn, down on the INR2.47bn posted a year ago. Sales were up by 21%, though, to INR28.36bn.

Volumes were up in the half-year, by 11% to 53.2m cases.

United credited the spread between its revenue rise in Q2 and volumes growth to “a 20% growth in the brands at the top end of the product spectrum", as well as price increases in various markets”.

United's share price slid by 6.3% on the Bombay Stock Exchange following the release of the figures.

To read United Spirits' Q1 press release, click here.

For the full breakdown of United Spirits' numbers, click here.