Beauty segment aids AptarGroup Q3 growth

By Andrew McDougall

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Euro United states dollar

Packaging firm AptarGroup posted better-than-expected Q3 results helped by strong growth in its beauty & home and closures segments; but predicts a difficult end to the year.

For the third quarter, which ended on September 30, Aptar reported sales of $517.5m, up 9 percent on the equivalent period last year, despite the negative effects of changes in currency rates.

"This was another strong broad-based quarter for our Company. Each of our business segments reported improved sales and income over the prior year,”​ commented Peter Pfeiffer, president and CEO.

Beauty contributes to strong growth

In particular, Aptar highlighted its beauty & home and closures segments, which each saw growth of 11 percent, as key drivers. The firm’s pharmaceutical division meanwhile saw a more modest increase with sales climbing 2 percent.

“Year over year demand increased in each of the end markets we serve, with notable increases coming from the fragrance/cosmetic and food/beverage markets,”​ Pfeiffer continued.

Momentum carrying on from strong H1

Year-to-date sales are up some 15 percent to $1.5 bn from the $1.3 bn Aptar posted a year ago; with the company stating that fluctuation in currency exchange rates has had little impact on revenue so far.

Pfeiffer stated, "We are particularly pleased that our businesses across the board have continued to perform well through the first nine months of the year. Sales to each of the end markets we serve increased over the prior year.”

"This success is attributable to our commitment to innovation, our reputation as a reliable and stable partner, and ultimately, the value we bring to our customers' brands."

Q4 earnings forecasted to be below market estimates

Looking forward, however, Aptar was more downbeat about its prospects.

The firm predicted a difficult final three months of the year, particularly in comparison with its record fourth quarter in 2009 when rebounding markets and the strong euro helped boost its financials.

At present, while markets continue their return to more normal patterns, the euro is in a weaker position than it was a year ago, which the dispenser manufacturer believes is likely to hinder growth in Q4 2010.

“We currently expect fourth quarter diluted earnings per share to be in the range of 53 cents to 58 cents per share compared to 52 cents per share reported last year,”​ said Pfeiffer.

Reuters reports that analysts estimate fourth quarter earnings of 62 cents per share.

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