Nestle to use new products to attract customers in 2012, expects tough year ahead amid weak demand in Europe and North America, CEO says

LOS ANGELES , February 20, 2012 () – The CEO of Nestle SA, Paul Bulcke, said the company will use new products to attract customers in 2012, which he expects to be a tough year amid weak demand in Europe and North America, the Wall Street Journal reported Feb. 17.

Bulcke made the comments after Nestle reported 2011 net earnings of 9.49 billion Swiss francs, down from 34.23 billion francs in 2010.

Bulcke said he expects sales to rise in 2012 as new products help overcome a drop in consumer confidence. Nestle CFO Jim Singh said 1.2 billion francs of European sales had come from products developed in the last three years.

Nestle is forecasting its raw-material costs to remain high but not be as volatile as last year. Singh forecasted that costs would increase in single digits this year, compared with 10% to 11% in 2011.

The primary source of this article is the Wall Street Journal, New York, New York, on Feb. 17, 2012.

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