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L’Oreal says cosmetics market should pick up in coming quarters

By Guy Montague-Jones , 05-Jun-2009
Last updated on 05-Jun-2009 at 12:23 GMT2009-06-05T12:23:17Z

Amid celebrations for L’Oreal’s 100th birthday, chief executive Jean-Paul Agon told reporters in Paris that the sales environment would improve over the coming quarters.

At a press conference organised to celebrate 100 years of the French beauty company, Agon briefed attendees on the health of the cosmetics market, reported Reuters.

L’Oreal said it is confident that the market has bottomed out and that things will improve over the next few quarters.

Growth predictions for the year

Agon, the head of the world’s largest cosmetics company, said growth in the beauty market should be zero or slightly positive this year.

Turning to the fortunes of L’Oreal itself, Agon said L’Oreal continues to gain market share and plans to expand further in Central Asia, India and the Middle East.

Agon also assured reporters that the company would not be holding back on research and development and that this year growth in research spending would exceed its sales growth.

Besides the financial update, L’Oreal, which was originally named the French Company of Harmless Hair Dye when it was founded 100 years ago, is rolling-out a number of centenary projects.

Centenary citizen projects

Marking the centenary, the company has announced the launch of 100 citizen projects across the world. These are based on the three central axes of L’Oreal’s corporate philanthropy: education, encouragement of self-esteem and the promotion of scientific research.

Agon said: “As well as being an occasion to celebrate and recognise the tremendous contribution of our teams past and present around the world, we wanted our centenary to serve as an opportunity to share with others, and to encourage our employees to assert their responsibility as citizens.

“So as to support underprivileged communities worldwide in a truly concrete and effective way, each affiliate will establish its local citizen project.”

Examples include a scientific discovery programme in 10 underpriveleged junior high schools in Indonesia and a project to help 100 visually-impaired people in Indonesia develop their independence by teaching them about personal beauty habits and techniques.

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