Alberto Culver reports falling sales and profit

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags United states dollar Currency

Hair care specialist Alberto Culver becomes another victim of the strong dollar against international currencies, as a resulting drop in sales dents profits.

The company reported that second quarter sales fell by 1.4 percent to $344.3m, from $340.4m in the same period last year, which was largely impacted by a reduction of 10.1 percent from foreign currency fluctuations.

The company pointed out that discounting the effects of currency exchange and the acquisition of the Noxzema brand from P&G, organic sales during the period increased by 6.3 percent.

Sliding sales hit profits

Net profit for the period fell 3.3 percent to $28.08m, from $29.03m in the corresponding period last year.

For the six months ending March 31, reported net sales increased 9.7 percent to $697.2m - again, mainly due to the strength of the US dollar - whereas organic sales rose by 7.9 percent during the period.

Net profits dipped by 0.34 percent, from $59.93m to reach $59.73m in the last quarter.

Organic sales suggest strong underlying performance

Underlining the company’s stronger organic sales growth, CEO James Marino said that the company’s underlying performance had been strong in the face of tough conditions.

"We continue to grow our market share in hair care and drive solid organic growth in what has been by all accounts a very challenging operating environment,”​ he said.

Marino also noted that the company has had to absorb price increases attributable to the spike in oil prices last fall, as well as supply and demand issues related to other material costs.

Tresemme and Nexxus worthy of investment

The company also noted that it had increased its investment in advertising for the Tresemme and Nexxus brands in an effort to support their further expansion, despite the fact that the overall market and advertising spend had fallen by 14.5 per cent to $57.6m, compared to the corresponding quarter last year.

Company executive chairman Carol Lavin Bernick conceded that the company was 'not entirely shielded' from the current economic conditions, but also stated that the company would remain focused on growing its brands over the long-term.

In line with the current economic conditions and the resulting lack of visibility, the company did not make any comments about its longer-term outlook.

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