Playtex Products reports 27% jump in skin care sales – 3 August 2006

A jump of 27 per cent in sales of its skin care care products helped to boost quarterly profits at Playtex Products, encouraging the company to reiterate its full-year forecasts.

During the latest quarter to July 1, the company said that net sales were up 10 per cent to reach $180.3m, compared to $163.8m in the corresponding quarter for 2005. On the back of this net income rose to $10.3m, compared to the $6.2m recorded for the same period last year.

Including charges and gains net profit totaled $11m, compared to $8.9m in the corresponding quarter of 2005.

Both sales revenue and net profits were up on average analysts’ forecasts, which had estimated that projected sales for the quarter would come in at around $170.8m.

For the full six months to July 1, net sales were up 6 per cent to $356.3m, compared to $335.1m in the same period during 2005, while net income stood at $23.1m, up 8 per cent compared to the $21.5m reported for the same period in 2005.

The company said that its skin care division had led the way, with a 27 per cent jump in sales for the quarter to $85.6m, compared to the same period a year ealier.

The primary driving force behind the jump was double digit sales growth for its Banana Boat sun care products, together with Wet Ones hand and face wipes.

The success of its Banana Boat sales was attributed to new products and increased ad spend. Likewise the company also said that sales were positively impacted by a shift towards consumers buying sun care products closer to the summer season.

The company said that the success of the Wet Ones sales was mainly attributable to successful seasonal retail promotions.

Meanwhile the company reported that sales for its feminine care division rose 7 per cent to reach $53.9m, whereas sales for the infant care division rose 5 per cent to reach $40.8m

Platex Products CEO Neil DeFeo said of the results, ”sales growth is strong, gross profit margins continue improve in spite of higher overall raw material costs, and operating income is growing despite the higher investments in both new products and advertising promotion.”

The company added that the performance gave it reason to reiterate its full year forecasts, stating the sales growth would be down to low-single digit figures compared to last year, to the divested brand sales of $48.6m during the course of 2005.

Net income is estimated to be in the range of $103m – $108m, compared to the $107m recorded in 2005.