BEAUTY CARE

Alberto Culver’s Q2 sales climb

BY Allison Cerra

MELROSE PARK, Ill. — Alberto Culver reported a 6.1% increase in its second-quarter net sales for the period ended March 31.

The company that’s behind such beauty care brands as Tresemme, Alberto VO5, Nexxus, St. Ives, Simple and Noxzema said second-quarter net sales rose to $408.2 million from $384.8 million in the prior-year second quarter. On an organic basis, which excludes the effect of foreign currency fluctuations, sales increased 4.3% in the current quarter, led by high single-digit branded beauty care sales growth.

Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations increased 16.7% to 35 cents in the second quarter, compared with 30 cents in the year-ago period. Excluding restructuring and discrete items, diluted earnings per share from continuing operations increased 32.3% to 41 cents, compared with 31 cents in second quarter 2010.

The company said that the increase of U.S. sales by 1.9% was attributed to strong growth in branded beauty care, partially offset by significantly lower custom-label manufacturing sales. International sales on a reported basis increased 12%, reporting growth in every region in which the company operates. The net effect of foreign currency fluctuations accounted for approximately 4.4% of the growth, Alberto Culver said.

"I am very proud of our incredibly talented and dedicated team who, despite being faced with challenging market conditions and the pending Unilever transaction, continued to build momentum on our brands and deliver strong results," Alberto Culver president and CEO V. James Marino said.

Last fall, the company announced its definitive agreement to be acquired by Unilever for $37.50 per share in cash. Alberto Culver shareholders OKed the transaction in December 2010.

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P&G features hair, grooming services at NACDS Annual

BY Antoinette Alexander

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — During the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Annual Meeting, Procter & Gamble is showcasing several of its health and beauty brands, such as Old Spice, Fusion, CoverGirl and Pantene, as well as its efforts to further partner with retailers to bolster sales via its health and beauty studios.

Women who visit the P&G Him/Her Studio are able to indulge in such services as hair and makeup touch-ups, and guys can take advantage of grooming services.

In a separate area dubbed the P&G Choose Well Suite, P&G addresses health-and-wellness trends, highlights products within its portfolio and illustrates via computer graphics the store of the future based on customer feedback.

Throughout the rooms, P&G is promoting its Have You Tried This? campaign, which speaks to the manufacturer’s effort to further partner with retailers to encourage consumers to place “just one more” product in the basket. The manufacturer estimated that getting consumers to buy just one more item is a $7 billion opportunity.

For photos, click here.

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Revlon reports upswing in Q1 net sales, income

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Revlon, which recently added the Sinful Colors brand to its portfolio, announced on Thursday an upswing in first-quarter net sales and net income.

"Our first-quarter results demonstrate the continued execution of our business strategy and our focus on driving growth," stated Alan Ennis, Revlon president and CEO. "Net sales increased 9% year-over-year, we delivered net sales growth in all regions and we added the Sinful Colors brand to our portfolio in March 2011. We also sustained competitive operating margins while significantly increasing investment to support our brands. We remain focused on delivering on our strategic objective of profitably growing our business."

On March 17, Revlon acquired certain assets, including trademarks and inventory, related to Sinful Colors cosmetics, as well as other brands with products that are sold primarily in the U.S. mass market.

For the quarter ended March 31, Revlon’s net sales totaled $333.2 million, up 9.1%, compared with the year-ago period. Net income totaled $10.4 million, or 20 cents per diluted share, compared with $2.2 million, or 4 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

In the United States, net sales were $186.2 million, up 2.3%, compared with the year-ago period. The increase was driven primarily by higher net sales of Revlon and Almay color cosmetics, which partially were offset by lower net sales of Revlon ColorSilk hair color. Net sales of Revlon color cosmetics increased in part because of lower promotional allowances as compared with first quarter 2010.

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