L’Oréal Cosmetics Business reaches pre-pandemic levels

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(Bloomberg) – L’Oréal SA’s main cosmetics business has surpassed pre-pandemic sales levels and the inflation that worries the markets does not appear to have an impact on the maker of Maybelline as consumers shy away from it. make up and perfume themselves again.

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Shares rose 6.8% on Friday after the company reported third-quarter adjusted sales growth of 13%, beating analysts’ expectations.

L’Oréal quickly recovered from the pandemic thanks to its diversified product offering. When consumers were confined, the drop in demand for makeup was partly offset by increased interest in creams from La Roche-Posay or CeraVe recommended by dermatologists on social media. Strong US demand made North America the fastest growing market, while Chinese sales were 43% higher than in the 2019 period.

“Large companies don’t seem to be bothered by a few more bottlenecks or a few more supply chain issues,” said Bruno Monteyne, analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein. “The good news is that growth is widespread at the regional and divisional level. “

A global vaccination campaign means restrictions on viruses have eased, with consumers now able to celebrate weddings and birthdays and eat out. Mandatory face masks outside in France, for example, are no longer mandatory, which is boosting sales of lipsticks and foundations.

CEO Nicolas Hieronimus said the fundamentals of the Chinese market are “extremely positive”.

Its active cosmetics unit, which includes brands such as CeraVe and SkinCeuticals, was the top performer with 28% growth over the period. The consumer products unit, which includes brands like Maybelline New York that sell lipsticks and mascaras as well as hair care, topped its performance over the same period in 2019.

(Updates with analyst commentary in fourth paragraph)

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