L’Oreal Paris announces increase in 2007 profit

PARIS French beauty company L’Oreal Paris announced on Wednesday that in 2007 group profit rose 29 percent.

Net profit totaled 2.66 billion euros (U.S. $3.87 billion), representing an increase of 29 percent. Profit excluding one-time gains, such as the Sanofi-Aventis sale in November, increased 11 percent to 2.04 billion euros.

Sales for the period ended Dec. 31 totaled 17.1 billion euros, up 8.1 percent. On a comparable basis, group sales rose 8 percent. As a result of the acquisition of The Body Shop, Sanoflore, Beauty Alliance, PureOlogy and Maly’s West, the net impact of changes in consolidation totaled an increase of 3.6 percent.

Excluding The Body Shop and USA professional distributors, sales totaled 16.1 billion euros ($23.4 billion).

“2007 marks a further very strong increase in the group’s results, reflecting the quality of the management of Jean-Paul Agon and his teams,” stated chairman Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones. “The level of results achieved enables us to propose another substantial increase in dividend to the annual general meeting; in the space of five years, the dividend has more than doubled. This is further proof of the group’s confidence for the coming year.”

For 2008, the company expects to achieve sales growth in its target range of 6 percent to 8 percent, like-for-like.

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