The results of the company, headquartered in Vevey, in the canton of Vaud, were slightly better than analysts' forecasts.
Sales at the group — known for products such as Nespresso coffee capsules or Maggi stock cubes — rose by 10.2 percent to hit 92.2 billion francs.
Analysts had tipped Nestlé to post a net profit of 10.5 billion francs, but the group's sales figure tallied with market-watchers' forecasts.
"In 2012 we delivered on our commitment: a good, broad-based performance building upon the profitable growth achieved consistently over previous years," Paul Bulcke, Nestlé's Belgian chief executive, said in a statement.
The group's said that its organic growth was 5.9 percent, and that it was broad-based across all categories and locations.
The figure was 5.9 percent in the Americas, 2.4 percent in Europe and 10.3 percent in Asia, Oceania and Africa.
Price rises contributed 2.8 percent of the group's growth.
"Despite the many challenges 2013 will no doubt bring, we expect to deliver the Nestle model of organic growth between 5 percent and 6 percent as well as an improved margin and underlying earnings per share in constant currencies," said Bulcke.