Profile of the Week

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Unilever shares rose after it said it planned to close more than 30 plants and cut a further 8,000 jobs, on top of 25,000 previously announced job cuts, as it absorbs Bestfoods. Though first-quarter profit fell sharply, reflecting acquisition-related interest costs, worldwide sales rose 20% and operating margins increased by 1.3 points to 12.4%. North American sales grew 31%, reflecting acquisitions and higher sales among brands such as Caress lotion and Suave shampoo. In trading Friday, Unilever closed at $56.95, up 5.97% for the week.
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