Alberto-Culver’s latest production facility hits full capacity

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Strong sales growth Alberto-culver

Hair and skin care specialist Alberto Culver says that its recently completed production facility in Jonesboro, Arkansas, has already reached full production capacity.

The facility, which was completed one year ago, has been ramping up to production capacity during the period, which was marked by the official opening of the plant this week.

Work began on the 475,000 square foot facility in January 2007 and actual production started in January of this year, a feat that the company says was down to thorough project management and planning.

Largest production facility

The plant is now the company’s largest production facility and represented an investment of $60m, reflecting the sheer size of the project and the fact that it is a technically advanced facility.

The facility will work in three shifts over a five day week, with the flexibility to extend the work schedule into weekends when production demands deem it necessary.

The second phase of production scheduling is likely to focus on the production of pumped products, the company said.

Workforce should extend to 400

There are 200 full-time employees at the plant, but extra staff will be taken on when demand is high, and it is expected that the full staff quota will eventually reach 400, a figure that will also include part-time and flexible workers.

Officials at the facility's opening ceremony on Tuesday told gathered press that the plant’s production would focus on both domestic and international markets, turning out approximately 140 million units a year.

The company is mainly focused on the production of hair care brands, with TRESemme and Alberto VO5 being its flagship lines, but it also produced an extensive range of skin care products under the St. Ives label.

Strong growth

The company recently announced strong sales growth for its third quarter, highlighting the fact that strong support of brands such as TRESemme, Alberto V05, Nexxus and St. Ives had helped it to post a 12.3 percent increase in net sales to $364.9m for the three months ending June, 30.

The company translated strong sales growth into a 21.8 percent rise in earnings from continuing operations but the poor performance of its soon to be sold Swedish subsidiary Cederroth dragged turnover down.

In May, Alberto-Culver announced the sale of Cederroth, which operates in the healthcare, personal care and household sectors.

The company said it was selling the subsidiary in order to concentrate on its successful nucleus of beauty brands.

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