KIT Kat-to-Nescafe foods giant Nestle today set its sights on even stronger growth this year after outperforming rivals in 2009.
The Swiss business boosted revenues 4.1% in tough markets last year and grew "substantially faster than our industry", according to chief executive Paul Bulcke.
Nestle - linked at one stage with a possible bid for Dairy Milk maker Cadbury - expects its food and drinks business to improve on the performance this year.
The group posted revenues of 108 billion Swiss francs (£64.5 billion) with sales of its famous Kit Kat chocolate and wafer treat up 7.1% worldwide.
In the UK, Kit Kat sales were 5.3% ahead and sales for the overall Rowntree's brand were up 10% - helped by new products such as Randoms fruit jelly sweets.
Nescafe is also improving its market share after the company launched its biggest investment in the brand for more than 20 years with its ’coffee at its brightest’ campaign last September.
But Nestle added that the outlook for the market "remains tough" this year in a still-difficult economic climate.
The company said: "UK consumers are more price-conscious than ever and the retail market continues to be intensely competitive."
Across European markets, which Nestle called "one of the world’s most challenging business environments", organic growth edged just 0.3% higher although the UK, France and Switzerland were among the best performers.
Nestle however however enjoyed a "remarkable" 6.5% organic growth in North America. Asian and African markets advanced 6.7% as the company saw good performances from fast-growing countries such as China.