US slow down pushes Elizabeth Arden into the red

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Quarter, United states dollar, North america

A market slow down in retail sales throughout North America meant
that premium cosmetics player Elizabeth Arden has posted a third
quarter loss.

The company reported that its losses for the quarter came in at $3.8m, compared to a profit of $3.1m for the corresponding quarter last year. The losses came off the back of a 4 percent drop in sales, which fell from $219.2m last year to $210.2m for the current quarter. Results down on expectations ​ The sales results were well down on expectations. Indeed analysts polled by Thomson Financial had expected sales for the quarter to come in at around $223.3m. The sales were also positively impacted by currency exchange, as a weakened dollar boosted sales overseas. Without the effect of currency exchange rates, sales fell by 5.9 percent. On the plus side, cash flow did increase by $52m during the quarter, which meant credit was reduced and shares could be repurchased, the company said. A disappointing quarter"Despite a weak consumer and retail environment, we were still disappointed with our results this quarter,"​ said Elizabeth Arden CEO Scott Beattie. Beattie pointed out that sales had fallen more than expected in North America, compounded by the fact that there had also been a slump in some key international markets during the quarter, namely the UK. However, the figures for the first nine months of the company's financial year looked a little rosier, with sales rising by 2.3 percent to $904.8m, compared to $884.8m for the corresponding period in the previous financial year, while net profits rose 9.7 percent to reach $30.37m. Outlook cautious​ Looking ahead to the rest of the year Beattie said he remained 'cautious' about business in both North America and the more developed markets in Europe. However, he also said he expected the outlook to be counterbalanced by new launches in the US and a continuing strong performance in the Asia Pacific markets. The company also said that it would be accelerating its supply chain overhaul during the rest of the year, which will see it implementing a new transaction-processing system.

Related topics: All Asia-Pacific, Business & Financial

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