|Master Investor Magazine
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The share price of FTSE 100 beverage giant Diageo (LON:DGE) dropped by 2.25% to 3,040p (as of 12:40 GMT) as operating profits edged upwards by 0.5% during the six months ended 31st December. Organic volumes grew by 0.2%, but net sales were up 4.2%.
CEO Ivan Menezes commented: “Diageo has delivered another good, consistent set of results in the first half, with broad based organic net sales growth across regions and categories. We have continued to increase investment behind marketing and growth initiatives, while expanding organic operating margins.
“During the half, we returned £1.1bn to shareholders via share buybacks, as part of our plan to return up to £4.5 billion of capital to shareholders for the period Fiscal 20 to Fiscal 22. We have also delivered another half of solid free cash flow at almost £1 billion.
“These results reflect the changes we are making in the business to drive shifts in our culture. They are in line with our current mid-term guidance and have been delivered in the face of increased levels of volatility in India, Latin America and Caribbean and Travel Retail.
“For the full year, we therefore expect organic net sales growth to be towards the lower end of our 4 to 6% mid-term guidance range. We continue to expect organic operating profit to grow roughly one percentage point ahead of organic net sales.
“There is ongoing uncertainty in the global trade environment and we would not be immune from further policy changes. We remain focused on building the long-term health of our brands, supported by data-led insights and a culture of everyday efficiency. With the consumer at the heart of the business and with greater agility and discipline in the execution of our strategy, we are growing Diageo in a consistent, sustainable way“.