Last week, Colgate-Palmolive pulled in net sales of €3.59bn ($4.26bn) for the second quarter (Q2) of 2021, up 9.5% on the previous year – the highest net sales increase for the company in almost ten years. Net income attributable to Colgate-Palmolive for the quarter sat at €593.8m ($708m) and for the first half (H1) of 2021, net sales tallied up at €7.26bn ($8.6bn), a 7.6% rise on the previous year.
Regionally, Europe and Africa/Eurasia performed the strongest with net sales up 15% and 15.5%, respectively. In Europe, strong organic sales growth was led by the UK, Germany, Poland and the Nordic region and in Africa/Eurasia by Turkey, Nigeria and Russia.
In Latin America – the company’s largest sales region alongside North America – net sales rose 12.5%, with strong performances in Brazil and Mexico, and in Asia Pacific net sales were up 7.5%. Net sales declined 4% in North America, largely due to organic sales declines in personal care and home care.
‘Strong growth’ despite ongoing volatility
Noel Wallace, chairman, president and CEO of Colgate-Palmolive, said the company’s “strong growth momentum” had clearly continued during Q2, despite “significant volatility”.
“Despite significant raw material and logistics cost headwinds, we delivered another quarter of increased operating profit, net income and earnings per share on a Base Business basis,” Wallace said.
And he said the “difficult cost environment” was set to continue into the second half of 2021, along with other challenges.
“As we look around the world, there is still much uncertainty stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, including volatility in consumer demand and currencies and supply chain disruptions. In the face of these challenges, Colgate people everywhere remain committed to achieving our business goals by driving premium innovation, executing with agility and leveraging digital in all areas of our business.”
John Faucher, chief investor relations officer, agreed. Speaking to analysts on the company’s earnings call, Faucher said: “We expect that all of these factors will continue to impact our business through the second half of this year. Because of that, we remain focused on delivering impactful innovation, leveraging our revenue growth management capabilities to deliver on pricing and driving productivity up and down the income statement.”
Colgate-Palmolive said it had maintained its full-year 2021 guidance, with net sales still expected to grow 4-7%. “I am confident that our investment choices and growth strategies will help us manage through this difficult time,” Wallace said.