La Prairie Group delivers strong sales growth in 2008

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Business

Switzerland-based premium cosmetics player La Prairie Group has revealed strong sales growth in 2008, despite the economic downturn.

The company said that 2008 net sales came in at CHF416m (€281m), which represented an increase of 10.2 per cent taking into account exchange rate effects and a rise of 5.5 per cent calculated at average exchange rates.

The rise is impressive, particularly given that premium personal care players have been hardest hit by the economic downturn in 2008, a factor that has led consumers to cut back on luxury purchases.

Future growth should come from Asia

However, the results do not indicate how the company did in the last two quarters of the year, which is the period where the fall in luxury personal goods spend has been most pronounced, in line with the fallout from the credit crunch.

In a financial statement the company said that it had experienced ‘qualitatively stronger and faster growth’ when compared to competitors in the category, while underlining the importance of the Asian market for future growth.

“The key to our success is certainly the four strong exclusive brands that complement one another optimally,”​ said CEO Dirk Trappmann.

Strength derived from four key brands

The company manufactures La Prairie, Juvena and Skin Biology Therapy skin care brands, together with the Marlies Moller hair care range – each of which has a worldwide distribution network with upmarket retailers.

The company said that the La Prairie brand had grown sales by 12.7 per cent, while the relaunch of the Marlies Moller hair care brand had helped to drive sales by 28.4 per cent.

The Skin Biology Therapy brand achieved above average results, whereas the weaker brand wasJuvena skin care.

The company says it is currently in the midst of repositioning Juvena and the fruits of this labour will culminate in the re-launching of the brand in April 2009.

Related topics: Business & Financial

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