Last week, Beiersdorf pulled in group sales of €3.87bn for the first half (H1) of 2021, up 12.3% on the previous year with its consumer business sales surging 9.4% to €3.1bn. Consumer sales were up 7.7% in Europe; up 11.7% in the Americas; and up 10.5% in Africa/Asia/Australia. The company said overall growth had largely been driven by strong momentum in China, particularly in digital, and strength in the sizeable US sunscreen market thanks to its Coppertone brand, acquired two years ago.
Organic sales across the entire business group grew 22.1% in H1, with dermo cosmetic brands Eucerin and Aquaphor performing particularly well. Beiersdorf’s flagship skin care brand Nivea saw organic sales rise 9.1% on the previous year during H1 and its prestige skin care brand La Prairie “recovered quickly” after difficulties during the COVID-19 pandemic, largely related to travel retail closures.
Back to pre-crisis levels with momentum set to continue
Vincent Warnery, CEO of Beiersdorf, said the half-year results were “strong” and took the company back to performing “above pre-crisis level”.
“We successfully managed to improve both sales and profitability compared to last year’s first half – despite still volatile market conditions,” Warnery said.
He said Beiersdorf planned to continue this momentum moving forward as it tapped “new business areas” and continued its sustainability efforts and digital transformation.
The company would also continue heavy investment in its C.A.R.E.+ strategy, he said – a concept to develop business with ‘courage, aspiration, responsibility and empathy’.
Climate-neutral goals – from fossil fuels to biogas
During its earnings announcement, Beiersdorf re-framed its goal that by 2030 all production sites would be climate neutral, and this week it said the company’s Berlin facility was set to transform by next year, switching from fossil fuels to biogas from January 2022.
By using biomethane and green electricity, the company said its Berlin plant was set to reduce overall CO2 footprint by 99% compared to 2018.
Malte Schulz, VP of supply chain for Europe at Beiersdorf, said: “We want to live up to our responsibility as a manufacturing and globally active company and are consistently aligning our actions with our vision of a ‘climate positive future’ and our ambitious targets. To this end, we are working intensively to reduce our emissions.”
Earlier this year, Beiersdorf unveiled new 'climate-neutralised' packaging under its Nivea brand that it co-developed with Saudi Arabian chemicals major Sabic.