Swiss-headquartered food and drinks mammoth Nestlé has reported a 79% jump in first-half profits to SFr5.7 billion ($3.8bn; €3.9bn; £2.5bn).

The earnings leap came on the back of several divestments and the IPO of US eye-care unit Alcon.

Overall sales, meanwhile, rose 7.2% to SFr44.2bn. However, internal growth, which excludes the effects of acquisitions, was 3.5% – an improvement on the first quarter’s 3.3% but below Nestlé’s target of 4%.

The group enjoyed double-digit growth in Eastern Europe and a healthy performance in North America, making up for slow sales in Western Europe and weak results in Japan and Latin America.

Citing its global reach and wide range of products, Nestlé predicted continued sales and profits growth for the rest of the year, though admitting that “in an unstable economic, monetary and currency environment, forecasting trends is of questionable value.”

Data sourced from: Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff