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Merck rallies 9% on good March quarter results; stock hits new high

SI Reporter/Mumbai 13 May 19 | 02:04 PM

Procter & Gamble Health Limited (formerly Merck Limited) shares hit a new high of Rs 4,042, up 9 per cent, on the BSE in an otherwise subdued market after the company reported strong March quarter earnings (Q1CY19). In comparison, the S&P BSE Sensex was marginally down by 0.04 per cent at 37,449 points at 02:01 pm.

The stock surpassed its previous high of Rs 3,990, recorded on April 9 in intra-day trade.

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The pharmaceutical company’s profit after tax rose 79 per cent at Rs 40.7 crore in Q1CY19 driven by high interest income and operational efficiencies. It had a profit of Rs 22.7 crore in year-ago quarter.

Total revenue grew 22.2 per cent at Rs 249 crore against Rs 204 crore in previous year quarter. The strong revenue growth driven by a strong performance across brands, growth in exports, higher interest income and improved execution.

Procter & Gamble Health is one of India's largestvitamins, minerals and supplements (VMS) companies manufacturing and marketing over-the-counter products, vitamins, minerals, and supplements products for a healthy lifestyle and improved quality of life.

The management said with a brand portfolio backed by science and trusted by doctors, pharmacists and consumers, and the best of consumer health capabilities and cultures, the company was working towards creating a much stronger presence in India's fast-growing consumer health industry.

Meanwhile, the board of directors of the company, in its meeting held on February 27, had declared a dividend of Rs 440 per equity share, for the financial year ended December 31, 2018, which includes a one-time special dividend of Rs 416 per share on account of gain on business transfer.

Last year, Merck had transferred biopharma, performance materials and life science businesses to group entity Merck Life Science for an overall consideration of Rs 1,052 crore.

The stock will turn ex-date for dividend on May 23, 2019.

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