BEAUTY CARE

Boswell named Alberto-Culver’s president of global brands

BY Antoinette Alexander

MELROSE PARK, Ill. Beauty company Alberto-Culver has named Gina Boswell president of global brands, overseeing such global brands as Alberto V05, TRESemme, St. Ives and Nexxus, research and development, and consumer insights.

Prior to joining Alberto-Culver, Boswell served as senior vice president and chief operating officer for Avon North America. At Avon, Boswell was responsible for multiple international markets, online brand development, operational restructuring and creating strategic alliances.

Before Avon, Boswell worked as an executive with Ford Motor Co. She also has worked with The Estee Lauder Cos. as vice president of new business development, managing mergers and acquisitions.

“We’re very excited to have an industry veteran such as Gina with a proven track record of strategic development and global brand stewardship joining our executive team,” stated Marino. “Gina’s experience shaping strategy and corporate development for brands such as Avon, Ford, Estee Lauder will be an integral part of Alberto-Culver’s global brand strategy and growth.”

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Clorox sales up after Burt’s Bees acquisition

BY Antoinette Alexander

OAKLAND, Calif. Clorox on Monday reported a second quarter sales boost of 8 percent thanks, in part, to its acquisition of natural personal care company Burt’s Bees, as it trimmed its fiscal 2008 outlook to reflect costs.

“Although the commodities environment remains challenging, we delivered strong top-line growth, and our business is strong across the portfolio. On Nov. 30, we completed the acquisition of Burt’s Bees, which is performing well. In December, we began shipping the Green Works line of natural cleansers, our most exciting launch in years,” stated Don Knauss, chairman and chief executive officer. “There’s a lot of enthusiasm across the organization about these new businesses, the momentum in our base business and our progress in delivering on our Centennial Strategy.” 

For the quarter ended Dec. 31, Clorox posted sales growth of 8 percent to $1.19 billion compared with $1.10 billion in the year-ago period. Contributing about 1.5 percentage points each of sales growth: December results from the Burt’s Bees acquisition, the bleach businesses acquired in fiscal 2007 and favorable foreign exchange rates. Volume increased about 6 percent compared with last year, including about 1 percentage point of growth from Burt’s Bees. 

Net earnings totaled $92 million, or 65 cents per diluted share, compared with $96 million, or 62 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Among the items impacting the current quarter: the Burt’s Bees acquisition, which reduced pretax earnings by $5 million, or 2 cents per diluted share, primarily due to costs associated with the acquisition. 

For fiscal year 2008, the company now expects earnings of $3.20 per share to $3.35 per share for the year, from a previous range of $3.33 per share to $3.50 per share. The previous range did not include its Burt’s Bees acquisition. 

In addition, Clorox previously had stated that its acquisition of Burt’s Bees would lower earnings by 10 cents to 15 cents per share, but it now expects it will dampen profit by between 13 cents and 15 cents per share. 

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P&G’s beauty and grooming sales rise

BY Antoinette Alexander

CINCINNATI While the big news to come out of Procter & Gamble’s second-quarter results was the spin-off of its coffee business, it should not go unnoticed that such beauty brands as Fusion, Head & Shoulders and Nice ‘N Easy helped drive sales and delivered double-digit volume growth.

Total sales for the quarter rose 9 percent to $21.6 billion from $19.7 billion in the year-ago period. Net earnings totaled $3.3 billion, or 98 cents per diluted share, compared with $2.9 billion, or 84 cents, in the year-ago period.

Operating margin was down slightly versus the year-ago period as a reduction in overhead spending as a percent of sales was more than offset by higher commodity and energy costs.

Beauty net sales rose 10 percent to $5.1 billion, and organic sales rose 5 percent. Skin care volume rose in the high-single digits behind Olay Definity and Regenerist. Hair care volume was up by low-single digits as strong results on Head & Shoulders were partially offset by softness in professional hair care. Net earnings in beauty were up 10 percent to $883 million.

Grooming net sales rose 9 percent to $2.2 billion behind 7 percent volume growth. Blades and razors volume was up by double-digits, led by double-digit developing region growth behind the expansion of Fusion. Net earnings in grooming were up 11 percent for the quarter to $429 million.

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