The French beauty major pulled in sales of €7.18bn for the third-quarter (Q3) of 2019, up 7.8% on the previous year in like-for-like terms, driving total nine-month sales up to €21bn for the year so far.
Luxe and Actives ‘particularly dynamic’
“L’Oréal achieved an excellent third quarter,” said Jean-Paul Agon, chairman and CEO of L’Oréal. “…All of the divisions are growing, especially L’Oréal Luxe and Active Cosmetics which are particularly dynamic.”
The company’s Active Cosmetics division generated sales of €606.4m for Q3, up 14.2% like-for-like on the previous year and the Luxe division grew 13.8% for the quarter in like-for-like terms, generating €2.75bn in sales.
Within Actives, the La Roche-Posay brand secured double-digit growth and continued to “accelerate sharply across all continents”, L’Oréal said, owing to its Anthélios, Effaclar and Hyalu B5 franchises. Vichy also showed continued growth, particularly in Eastern Europe and Latin America, thanks to its Liftactiv and Minéral 89 ranges.
Within L’Oréal’s Luxe division, Lancôme’s new formula launch Génifique and the Calendula Serum-Infused Water Cream by Kiehl’s contributed to success in skin care and the Helena Rubinstein brand continued to accelerate in the ultra-premium skin care market.
For fragrances, the highlight for Q3 had been the “excellent start” made by two new perfumes: Idôle by Lancôme and Libre by Yves Saint Laurent, L’Oréal said. Agon had previously talked about the power fragrances would have in reigniting growth in Western Europe.
L'Oréal recently signed an agreement to acquire Clarins Group's entire fragrance division, including its Mugler and Azzaro brands. The deal had been in discussion since July and should close in the first quarter of next year.
Eastern Europe ‘accelerating’, Western Europe ‘ongoing’ improvements
While Asia Pacific continued to be a key growth driver for L’Oréal’s global business, up 22.6% like-for-like for Q3 on the previous year, Agon said Eastern Europe was “accelerating” and improvements in Western Europe remained “ongoing”. Sales across Eastern Europe were up 12.8% like-for-like in the quarter and sales in Western Europe up 3.2%.
“Overall, L’Oréal’s strong performance during the quarter and in the first nine months reinforces our confidence in the dynamism of the cosmetics market, despite a volatile and contrasted environment, and in our ability to outperform it in order to achieve another year of growth in our sales and profit,” he said.