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Nestle India fourth quarter net profit misses estimates

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MUMBAI Nestle India Ltd (NEST.NS) reported fourth-quarter net profit below analysts’ estimates as it struggles to regain market share of its once-popular Maggi noodles that were temporarily banned last year over safety concerns.

The India unit of Nestle SA, the world’s largest packaged food company, reported a net profit of 2.59 billion rupees ($38.87 million) for the January-March quarter, while analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected 2.87 billion rupees on average.

The net profit was well below the 3.20 billion rupees Nestle India posted a year earlier, before Indian regulators found some samples of its Maggi noodles contained unsafe levels of lead.

The company had to pull the noodles off the shelves for nearly six months, and restarted sales only in November, after tests carried out at Indian government-accredited laboratories showed the noodles were safe for consumption.

($1 = 66.6250 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Zeba Siddiqui in Mumbai; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)


Source: R-Business

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Dr Reddy's Labs fourth quarter profit slumps on Venezuela write-off

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MUMBAI India’s second-largest drugmaker, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd (REDY.NS), reported a much lower-than-expected quarterly profit due to a write-off related to Venezuela’s economic crisis which has damaged its business there.

Companies including Dr Reddy’s have been trying for months to recover funds from OPEC member Venezuela as oil prices sink and food scarcity and power cuts stir public protest.

Dr Reddy’s said it took a hit of 4.31 billion rupees ($65 million) in the January-March quarter because it could not get approval from the Venezuelan government to recover any more money beyond the $4 million it has already received.

As a result, profit slumped nearly 86 percent to 746 million rupees, while analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a profit of 5.52 billion rupees on average.

“We will continue to actively engage with the Venezuelan government to provide affordable medicine to fulfil the need of the people of the country, subject to repatriation of funds,” Dr Reddy’s Chief Executive GV Prasad said in a statement.

While revenues from North America, Dr Reddy’s biggest market, rose 12 percent, and those from India were up 11 percent, they could not offset declining sales in Europe and emerging markets.

($1 = 66.6 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Zeba Siddiqui in Mumbai; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu/Ruth Pitchford)


Source: R-Business

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Iraq overtakes Saudi as biggest Indian exporter for April

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NEW DELHI Iraq overtook Saudi Arabia as the top crude exporter to India in April for the first time since December, according to data compiled by Reuters, as the two biggest OPEC producers fight for market share in Asia’s fastest growing oil market.

Saudi Arabia also lost its top spot in China, Asia’s biggest oil consumer, last month when Russia overtook the world’s biggest crude exporter due to strong purchases by Chinese independent refineries.

Overall, April oil imports by India rose 6 percent from March and are up 9.9 percent in the first four months from a year ago. For the first four months of 2015, imports fell 0.6 percent from a year ago because of refinery outages.

Iraqi oil exports to India were 960,700 barrels per day (bpd) in April, a 41 percent jump from March and 79 percent higher than a year ago, data obtained by Reuters and compiled by Thomson Reuters Oil Analytics showed.

India imported about 787,700 bpd of oil from Saudi Arabia last month, about 14 percent lower than a year ago, the data showed.

Iraq accounted for 22 percent of April Indian imports, up from about 15 percent a year ago, while Saudi Arabia’s share dropped to 18 percent from about 25 percent a year ago.

“Iraqi oil is much more beneficial than Saudi because they are better priced. There is a significance difference in prices,” said A. K. Sharma, head of finance at Indian Oil Corp..

Iraq has consistently maintained their official selling prices (OSP) below Saudi Arabia. In April, Iraq set the OSP for its flagship Basrah Light crude at a discount of 2.60 a barrel to Middle East benchmarks, 20 cents under the OSP for comparable crude grade Arab Medium.

Overall, Indian crude demand rose in 2016 as refiners normally avoid maintenance shutdown in the first quarter to meet annual crude processing target for the fiscal year.

Also, Indian Oil Corp, the country’s biggest refiner, boosted imports after commissioning the 300,000-bpd Paradip refinery.

Iran is also raising its share in Indian imports. The country accounted for about 9 percent of overall purchases in April compared to about 7.2 percent a year ago.

Overall in January to April, Iranian oil accounted for about 7.4 percent of Indian imports from about 4 percent a year ago, becoming fifth-largest oil supplier to India compared with the eighth position a year ago.

On the losing side, Latin American suppliers exported 8.2 percent less crude to India during January to April. The region’s share in Indian imports declined to about 16 percent from about 19 percent a year ago as its oil has become uncompetitive in the ongoing price war.

(Editing by Henning Gloystein and Christian Schmollinger)


Source: R-Business

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