However, France-based L’Oreal and Anglo-Dutch Unilever are flying the flag for Europe, coming in at second and third place respectively, according to information sourced from Datamonitor and compiled by financial publication Seeking Alpha (please scroll down to the table at the foot of this article).
Swedish company Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget also makes the top ten thanks to a €10bn annual turnover mainly derived from secondary category products such as nappies and feminine hygiene products.
Throwing light on best investments
The data throws light on which of the biggest personal care players might make sound returns for stock market investors, who are likely to turn to the personal care sector as a means of a safe and steady investment during the current global economic crisis.
The data takes into account the biggest players in the market for every day personal care products, including hair care, oral care, deodorants and skin care, together with secondary categories such as plasters and nappies.
Looking for 'safer' investment
In troubled financial times many stock markets turn to what are deemed to be ‘safer’ investments – a criteria many of the major personal care players are said to fulfill due to what has commonly become known as the ‘lipstick’ effect.
In essence, this refers to the fact that in tough financial times, consumers turn to less expensive luxury goods as a means of treating themselves.
Likewise, tougher economic times also have little impact on every day personal care items such as shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant and commonly used skin care products such as moisturisers.
Procter & Gamble
Johnson & Johnson
Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget
Note: Companies not trading in the US are market N/A
Source: Compiled by Seeking Alpha, sourced from Datamonitor