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In H1, Unilever’s beauty operations advance, and prestige is high.

Published: July 31, 2023
Author: Fashion Value Chain

Unilever reported total underlying sales growth of 9.1% on Tuesday, with certain segments performing better than others but overall progress being made. During this time, revenue on a GAAP basis increased 2.7% to €30.4 billion.

9.4% of the overall 9.1% increase was due to price growth, whereas volume decreased by 0.2%.

In terms of yearly comparisons, it appears that the first quarter was better than the second, as seen by Q2’s lower 7.9% underlying sales growth and 0.4% drop in turnover to €15.7 billion. Naturally, we must take into account the fact that year-over-year comparisons have been challenging for a while and have recently become more challenging due to the return to normalcy and release of pent-up demand during 2022.

When considering the topics that is most passionate about, the business appears to have performed well in the first half.

Sales of the division’s Beauty & Well-Being products increased under GAAP by 8.6% to €6.2 billion, or 9.1%. Additionally, Personal Care saw an even greater 10.8% growth in underlying sales, with a 7.3% increase in turnover to €6.9 billion.

Despite experiencing some revenue loss due to currency exchange, Beauty & Wellbeing, which accounts for 20% of total sales, was nonetheless able to grow its volumes by 3.8% in the first quarter and 4.9% in the second. However, the overall picture for the unit was favourable. The Americas drove favourable volume growth in the hair care industry, which increased by high single digits. Two-digit growth was achieved by Sunsilk and TRESemmé, which was aided by their excellent relaunches.

Vaseline performed well as it expanded the popular Gluta-Hya product into the pro-age market, offering new advantages and contributing to Core Skin Care’s mid-single-digit growth.

Another period of double-digit growth driven by volume was achieved by Prestige Beauty and Health & Wellbeing. In Prestige, Paula’s Choice, Dermalogica, and Hourglass “delivered strong growth supported by new product launches backed by cutting-edge science and technology, such as Dermalogica’s phyto nature oxygen cream”

Although currency exchange was once again a problem, the company saw volume and value increase in the Personal Care sector, which accounts for 23% of total revenue.

Price increases of 7.3% and volume growth of 3.2% combined to account for the 10.8% underlying sales growth.

Deodorants saw high-double-digit growth, driven by the Americas and Europe. As the Fine Fragrance line was introduced, Axe experienced double-digit growth. It introduced new Rexona variations that expanded on its 72-hour technology, resulting in high-double-digit growth.

The Dove Personal Care line of products also saw double-digit growth.

Skin cleansing experienced high single-digit growth, with Latin America and South Asia driving this expansion.

The company’s first half success, according to the new CEO Hein Schumacher, “highlights the elements that drew me to the business: an unequalled worldwide footprint, a portfolio of excellent brands, and a team of talented people. My early involvement in the industry has strengthened my conviction in Unilever’s sound principles. The challenge is to use these fundamental advantages, reinforced by our streamlined operational model, to boost performance and competitiveness. This will require greater concentration, more precise execution, innovations supported by research, and investment in our brands since it is our top priority.

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