Tokyo-based instant noodle maker Nissin Food Products Co unveiled poor fiscal results yesterday [Thursday] for the full year ended 31 March, but insisted that things were looking up for 2002.

Net profit dropped for the fourth consecutive year in 2001, falling 21.5% to ¥11.9bn (US$93.21m) year on year, despite a 2.5% rise in group sales to ¥308.4bn. On an operating basis, profits fell 9% to ¥24.8bn.

Nissin said that increasing operating costs of ¥2bn and a series of one-time charges amounting to ¥8bn from stock appraisal losses caused the profit dive. With this in mind, it forecast a confident 34% profit rise to ¥16bn for this year.

The company also announced yesterday that it plans to seek shareholder approval on 27 June for a buy back of up to 60 million shares, worth around ¥15bn, representing 4.7% of its outstanding stock.