The operating income includes the performance of a Russian beverage company in which a 51% stake was acquired through a subsidiary during the quarter ended September 30, 2009. During the September-December 2009 quarter, increased investments in advertising and promotions drove brand performance and new initiatives.
The standalone income from operations for the quarter grew 18% to Rs 451 crore from Rs 383 crore for the same period last year. This growth was driven by strong brand performance. Profit from operations before other income, interest and exceptional items at Rs 44 crore is marginally higher than the corresponding quarter of the previous year. With a value share of 22.6% in November, Tata Tea is now the market leader in the Rs 7,000-crore branded teas market, having overtaken peer Hindustan Unilever (HUL) which has a value share of 21.3% (source:AC Nielsen). The companys best-selling brand is Agni which caters to the mass segment and other brands include Tata Tea Gold, Chakra, Gemini and Kanan Devan.
The Rs 5,100 crore Tata Tea, which has been the market leader in terms of volumes since June 2007, clocked a volume share in November of 19.9%, about 250 basis points higher than HULs 17.3%.