What is the consumer sentiment in global markets vis-a-vis India?
Global markets continue to be unsettled and challenged in terms of economic growth, particularly in Europe and, to some extent, in the United States. In the developed part of the world, we are seeing a lot of stress. The UK, for instance, has gone into recession. So has Spain. There are challenges. In the developing part of the world, there is still growth. We live in an interconnected world, so it would be wrong to assume that if one part of the world has a problem, the other would continue to thrive. We hope to see a global recovery. But I am afraid that at this stage, it is a little far off. So, from a business point of view, we would continue to have growth agenda, but we have to be acutely conscious that we are managing the costs of our business far more sharply and dynamically as we move along. Remember, there is less growth, but more inflation. This is the new reality and we have to live with it.
HUL delivered strong numbers against the new reality you just indicated. Are you satisfied?
The most pleasing part of the results was we delivered good numbers for 2011-12. Quarterly numbers can be influenced by the activities we undertook during the period. But our annual performance is key. More so because three years back we had said we would invest what we needed to, to defend our position against competition who were cutting prices. Today, we are seeing growth both in top line and margins.