Cadbury Nigeria’s losses narrow as company struggles to return to profitability

Cadbury Nigeria Plc on Thursday reported a net loss of ₦64 million for the nine months to the end of September. The loss was an improvement from 2016 when the company posted a net loss of ₦842 million. The firm said that its fortune improved in the third quarter as it posted a net profit of ₦702 million, helping narrow the cumulative loss.

The Bournvita maker said that it saw a 14% increase in sales in the nine months to the end of September. Sales climbed to ₦24.3 billion (USD$66.9m) from ₦21.3 billion (USD$58.7m) in the previous year.

However, administrative expenses weighed on the firm’s operating profit, rising 31% to ₦1.5bn (USD$4.1m) in the nine months to the end of September, with a third quarter increase of 251% to ₦537m. Skyrocketing net finance cost added to the company’s woes, spiking 210% to ₦206m.

Cadbury has faced challenges with rising costs brought about by low oil price which triggered the Naira devaluation in 2016. Moreover, talking to distributors of the company’s flagship brand Bournvita, they say there is a general consumer preference for its main rival’s brand, Nestle Milo. Despite the heavy expenditure Cadbury has made on rebranding and promoting Bournvita, the product continues to lag Milo in terms of consumer preference and distributors of the brand do not see this pattern changing in the near term.

$1 = ₦363

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