L’Oreal fourth-quarter sales growth beats forecasts

Demand recovered in Asia but western Europe still in the doldrums for the cosmetics giant

At L’Oreal full-year operating income rose 13 per cent to €4.39 billion while total sales advanced 12 per cent to €25.3 billion.

At L’Oreal full-year operating income rose 13 per cent to €4.39 billion while total sales advanced 12 per cent to €25.3 billion.

 

L’Oreal SA, the world’s largest cosmetics company, reported revenue that beat analysts’ estimates as sales growth accelerated at its luxury division and in North America.

Fourth-quarter sales gained 4.2 per cent on a like-for-like basis, Paris-based L’Oreal said. Analysts predicted a 3.7 per cent increase, based on the median of 20 estimates.

Demand for luxury cosmetics such as Giorgio Armani scents rose as market turbulence that held back growth in Asia over the summer proved temporary. Stronger sales in the region also helped compensate for a slowdown in Brazil and a lacklustre performance in Western Europe, where L’Oreal is struggling to win market share in its consumer-products division.

Full-year operating income rose 13 per cent to €4.39 billion, matching analysts’ estimates. Total sales advanced 12 per cent to €25.3 billion, slightly exceeding the €25.1 billion estimate.

Like-for-like revenue rose 3.9 per cent. The stock fell 2.9 per cent in Paris trading Thursday, extending this year’s decline to 5.5 per cent. The results were announced after markets closed. The firm said it expects to grow faster than the global cosmetics market, which it estimates expanded about 3.5 per cent in 2015.

- (Bloomberg)