29 Jul 2021

1.NESTLE : Food giant Nestle raised its full-year organic growth guidance to 5-6% after strong demand for coffee lifted organic sales by a better-than-expected 8.1% in the first half of the year.

Food groups are grappling with surging commodity costs that are hitting margins, but Nestle, with well-known brands like Nescafe coffee and Purina pet food, may be better placed than others to offset them through price increases and efficiency gains.

“We expect full-year organic sales growth between 5% and 6%,” Chief Executive Mark Schneider said in a statement on Thursday. “We have built the foundation for delivering consistent mid-single-digit organic growth for years to come.”

The company had been aiming for 2021 organic sales growth in excess of the 3.6% achieved last year.

Organic sales growth, which excludes acquisitions and currency swings, at Nestle accelerated to 8.1%, from 2.6% in the year-ago period, the world’s biggest food group said. This was ahead of an estimate for 7.4% growth in a company-compiled consensus.

Growth accelerated to 8.6% in the second quarter, from 7.7% in the first three months of the year.

Net profit rose slightly to 5.9 billion Swiss francs ($6.49 billion), also ahead of a consensus estimate of 5.84 billion Swiss francs.

The underlying trading operating profit margin remained stable at 17.4% in the first half despite increases in commodities, packaging and transportation costs.

Peer Unilever  said last week it expected cost inflation to be in the high-teens in the second half of the year.

2.HYUNDAI:- South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Group and LG Energy Solution said on Thursday they would set up a joint venture (JV) in Indonesia to establish a battery cell plant for electric vehicles (EV), investing $1.1 billion with each owning half the business.

The JV will help Hyundai Motor Co and its sister company Kia Corp secure a stable supply of EV batteries at a competitive price for their battery electric vehicles.

LG Energy Solution (LGES), the wholly owned battery subsidiary of LG Chem Ltd, and Hyundai signed a memorandum of understanding with the Indonesian government to build the plant in the country, the companies said in a joint statement on Thursday.

The news comes as global automakers move to secure EV batteries in anticipation of a rise in sales because of government subsidies and quotas worldwide seeking to cut carbon emissions.

Construction of the plant will start in the fourth quarter of 2021 and will be completed by the first half of 2023, the companies said.

Indonesia is promoting the domestic development of EV and battery production to create a downstream industry for the country’s rich supply of lithium battery ingredient, nickel laterite ore.

3.SAMSUNG:-Samsung Electronics Co Ltd on Thursday forecast strong demand for memory chips and a recovery in demand for display panels due to new smartphone launches, after posting its highest quarterly operating profit in over two years.

“For the second half, market conditions are expected to be favorable for the component business,” Samsung  said in a statement, although it cautioned that “risks of continued disruptions in component supply and uncertainties related to COVID-19 are likely to persist.”

Despite the risks posed by shortages of other semiconductors, it said the memory chip market’s fundamentals remain strong on increasing 5G adoption, new smartphone model launches, and sustained demand for servers and PCs.

Samsung said its chip inventory has fallen to low levels as it shipped more chips than previously expected in the second quarter.

The world’s top maker of memory chips and smartphones posted a 54% jump in operating profit in the April-June quarter to 12.6 trillion won ($10.95 billion), from 8.1 trillion won a year earlier, its best result since the third quarter of 2018.

Samsung said the outcome was buoyed by strong memory-chip prices and higher-than-expected demand from consumer electronics makers and data centre customers.

However, mobile profits dipped from the previous quarter due to constrained supply of mobile processor chips and production disruptions related to the coronavirus pandemic.

4.AIRBUS:–  Europe’s Airbus sharply raised its forecasts for full-year deliveries and earnings after reporting better-than-expected half-year results on Thursday.

The world’s largest planemaker ahead of U.S. rival Boeing  said it expected to deliver 600 aircraft in 2021, and doubled its forecast for operating income to 4 billion euros ($4.7 billion) while predicting 2 billion euros of free cash flow before mergers and acquisitions, and customer financing.

It had previously expected to match last year’s 566 jet deliveries while forecasting 2 billion euros of operating profit along with a breakeven in free cashflow.

Reuters reported on Wednesday that Airbus would beat its previous target and deliver more than 600 jets this year after negotiating compromise deals with airlines.

Led by commercial aerospace and helicopter divisions, Airbus swung to an operating profit of 2.009 billion euros in the second quarter, compared with a loss of 1.23 billion a year earlier, as revenues rose 70% to 14.177 billion euros.

For the first half, Airbus posted operating earnings of 2.703 billion euros, eclipsing its previous full-year goal.

Analysts were on average expecting 1.586 billion euros of operating profit on revenues of 13.996 billion euros in the second quarter, according to a company-compiled consensus.

“This enables us to raise our 2021 guidance although we continue to face an unpredictable environment,” Chief Executive Officer Guillaume Faury said of the mid-year results.

.5.VOLKSWAGEN –Europe’s largest carmaker Volkswagen on Thursday raised its profit margin target for the second time in less than three months, pointing to record earnings in the first half of 2021 that even blew past pre-pandemic levels.

The company said it now expected an operating return on sales of 6.0-7.5%, having previously guided for 5.5-7%.

First-half operating profit before special items reached 11.4 billion euros ($13.5 billion), above the 10 billion euros achieved in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc in the global economy.

“We’re keeping up our high pace, both operationally and strategically,” Chief Executive Herbert Diess said in a statement, published only hours after the carmaker, along with partners, launched a bid for French-listed Europcar.

The global car sector has been hit by a shortage of crucial semiconductors, with numerous rivals, including Daimler , BMW and GM, adjusting or halting production.

“The risk of bottlenecks and disruption in the supply of semiconductor components has intensified throughout the industry,” Volkswagen said, lowering the outlook for deliveries to customers.