#1 John De Silva Managing Director Unilever Caribbean Limited Businessuite 2019 Top Caribbean CEO
John De Silva Managing Director
Experienced FMCG Executive, joined Unilever Caribbean Ltd. in November 2017.
Has over 20 years’ Multinational experience in General Management, Supply Chain Operations and Finance, having worked in Trinidad, Jamaica, Switzerland, the Dominican Republic and Mexico.
Held senior executive positions including Director of a Food and Beverage business in Jamaica, Caribbean business General Manager, and Head of Supply Chain and Operations for Latin America.
John is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the UK and an alumnus of IMD Business School, Switzerland. He also sits on the board of Trinidad & Tobago Manufacturers’ Association (TTMA).
Unilever Caribbean Limited (UCL) is part of the Unilever Group, which provides strategic guidance, technology and training to the local operations. Globally, the Group is focused on the Beauty and Personal Care, Foods and Refreshment and Home Care Categories, and UCL is moving quickly to better align to the Group’s strategic direction. This will enable UCL to better leverage group resources and expertise to accelerate profitable growth.
The Financial Performance
Difficult trading conditions continued in 2018, impacting Unilever Caribbean Limited’s business in the Domestic and several key Export markets. Looming economic uncertainty and structural reforms significantly impacted labour in Trinidad and Tobago, further dampening already low levels of consumer confidence.
Turnover was TT$317.8m (2017: TT$ 464.0m), driven mainly by the Spreads divestment. Home Care felt the effects of demand contraction and increased competition. Declines in some export markets impacted the Personal Care and Foods Categories, but this was partially off-set by excellent growth in the higher-margin categories of Personal Care in the domestic market, and by Refreshment in all key markets.
The Company launched several initiatives to improve efficiencies, reduce costs and improve the cash position, against the backdrop of the disposal of the Spreads business in July 2018. Profit Before Tax on Continuing Operations was TT$7.8m. Profit from Discontinued Operations, Net of Tax of TT$162.2m includes revenue and expenses for the Spreads business for the period January to June 2018 and the gain on the subsequent disposal.
Unilever is also operating in a sector that is experiencing widespread disruption, and these challenges provide opportunities for the Company to act with agility and to respond to evolving consumer preferences through our wide, globally sourced portfolio. The Board and Management continue to focus on executing the transformational initiatives of portfolio shift, expanded distribution and increased investment in people and brands to significantly improve our financial performance.
Returns To Shareholders
The Board of Directors has declared a total dividend of TT$2.25 comprising of an interim dividend of $0.08 and a final dividend of T$2.17 (2017: TT$0.76), with Total Earnings Per Share at TT$6.42 (EPS – Continuing Operations: TT$0.24, EPS – Discontinued Operations: TT$6.18). This represents a dividend payout of 35% of the year’s total earnings.
Although challenging trading conditions are expected in 2019, the Board is confident in the outlook and strategy set for the Company. Unilever will continue to focus on transforming our portfolio, increasing distribution and investing in our people and brands to deliver profitable growth in all our categories and key markets.
John De Silva Managing Director Unilever Caribbean Limited
To view full 2018 Annual Report click HERE