BEAUTY CARE

Helen of Troy enters licensing agreement with office supplies co., drug maker

BY Alaric DeArment

EL PASO, Texas A company that designs, develops and markets brand-name personal care and household consumer products plans to license one of its brands to an office products company and a drug maker.

Helen of Troy announced Friday that its OXO brand had entered two licensing agreements with Staples and pharmaceutical company UCB. The 19-year-old brand makes consumer products based on Universal Design, and products resulting from the relationships with Staples and UCB will use OXO’s resources and design philosophy.

The office tool line, OXO Good Grips, will be available in all Staples stores and on www.staples.com beginning this month. The line includes items such as push pins, staplers and staple removers.

“With these partnerships, we were able to apply our design principles in a different setting,” OXO president Alex Lee said in a statement. “Both were collaborative processes from beginning to end and executed as if they were internal OXO projects.”

With UCB, OXO has developed a syringe and packaging components for the drug Cimzia (certolizumab pegol) designed to accommodate rheumatoid arthritis patients who self-administer their medicine. The Food and Drug Administration approved Cimzia as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis earlier this week.

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Coppertone launches new sunscreen with antioxidants

BY Allison Cerra

KENILWORTH, N.J. In time for warmer weather, Schering-Plough, introduces Coppertone NutraShield with Dual Defense, a new line of sunscreens enriched with antioxidants to help promote natural skin repair by neutralizing harmful free radicals created by UV exposure.

Topical antioxidants can offer cosmetic skin-enhancing benefits when added to a broad spectrum sunscreen. A growing body of research reveals that daily sun exposure during everyday activities can contribute to skin damage that appears as fine lines and wrinkles as well as certain types of skin cancer. In response to these findings and consumer demand for multi-benefit skincare products, Coppertone developed its NutraShield line — an SPF 70+ Faces lotion as well as SPF 70+ and SPF 30 lotions for the body — in lightweight formulas perfect for daily use to help protect and nourish skin.

“Coppertone has a legacy of continuous innovation to meet the changing needs of consumers,” said Robert Bianchini, PhD, VP of R&D, global skincare at Schering-Plough Consumer HealthCare. “This year, we’re offering consumers powerful broad spectrum sunscreens that also contain what we’ve discovered to be effective blends of antioxidants to help neutralize free radicals in skin.”

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Helen of Troy reports Q4, fiscal year results

BY Allison Cerra

EL PASO, Texas Helen of Troy reported sales and earnings for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended Feb. 28, 2009.

Fourth quarter sales decreased 3.8% to $138.6 million. Sales in the personal care segment decreased 6.1% to $94 million in the fourth quarter, compared with $100.1 million for the same period last year.

Earnings per share for the fourth quarter was $0.36, compared with $9.81 million, or $0.31 per fully diluted share, for the same quarter of the prior year, an increase of 16.1% per fully diluted share.

Fiscal year net sales decreased 4.6% to $622.7 million, from $652.5 million in the prior fiscal year. Net sales in the housewares segment for the full year increased 6.9% to $175.5 million, compared with $164.1 million for the same period last year. Meanwhile, net sales in the personal care segment for the full year decreased 8.4% to $447.2 million, compared with $488.4 million in the year-ago period.

“The domestic retail environment continues to be challenging and is expected to continue that way for a number of quarters. However, as the business environment begins to improve, we are well positioned to take advantage of our leadership role in our marketplace and categories,” stated Gerald Rubin, president and CEO of Helen of Troy.

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