Estée Lauder Hits $4 Billion in Sales for Latest Quarter

The Estée Lauder Cos. hit a new quarterly high with $4.01 billion in sales for its fiscal second quarter.
Numbers were driven by skin care, which was up 16 percent to $1.7 billion in net sales, the Asia Pacific region, online and travel retail.
Net sales were up 7 percent year-over-year. Net earnings were $573 million, up dramatically from $123 million in the prior-year period. Diluted net earnings per share were $1.55, compared to 33 cents the prior year.
"Our sustained progress is the result of our multiple engines of growth strategy, and demonstrates our agility in moving resources to the best global opportunities," said Lauder president and chief executive officer Fabrizio Freda. "Our strongest growth engines this quarter included the skin care category globally, the Asia Pacific region, the online and travel retail channels, and most brands, including Estée Lauder, La Mer, MAC and our artisanal fragrance brands."
Skin care sales were Lauder's largest subcategory in the quarter. Growth was driven by the Estée Lauder brand, bolstered by the Advanced Night Repair franchise, as well as Origins and Clinique, globally. La Mer also posted double-digit growth, driven by higher sales of existing products and launches like The Treatment Lotion Hydrating Mask and The Luminous Lifting Cushion Foundation.
Makeup sales were up 3 percent, to $1.56 billion, driven by Estée Lauder, MAC, Tom Ford, and Becca, offset by lower sales from Clinique and Smashbox. Estée Lauder's Double Wear franchise continues to post growth, and Tom Ford Beauty posted double-digit gains helped by lip and eye shadow. Operating income for the segment declined because of planned investments in Too Faced to support international expansion, the company said, combined with dips in makeup sales from Clinique and Smashbox.
Fragrance sales were down 5 percent, to $537 million in the quarter. The dip was because of changes in promotions over the holiday season from Estée Lauder, the company said, which was offset by growth in artisanal brands like Jo Malone London, Le Labo, Tom Ford Beauty and By Kilian.
Hair care sales were up 7 percent to $154 million, driven by new launches and growth from Aveda.
Lauder raised its guidance, projecting net sales between 5 percent and 6 percent versus the prior year period, with diluted net earnings per share between $1.17 and $1.20.
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