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Estée Lauder Reports Solid Financials


NEW YORK—The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. reported a solid financial performance for the fourth quarter and record results for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2011. For the year, the Company had net sales of $8.81 billion, a 13-percent increase compared with $7.80 billion reported in the prior year. Excluding the impact of foreign currency translation, net sales increased 12 percent from a year ago. The Company reported net earnings for the year of $700.8 million, compared with $478.3 million last year. Diluted net earnings per common share rose 46 percent to $3.48, compared with $2.38 reported in the prior year.

Fabrizio Freda, president and CEO, said: "Fiscal 2011 was an outstanding year for our Company. We achieved record sales, gross margin, operating margin, earnings per share and operating cash flow. These results confirm that our strategy is working and has allowed us to reach our original 13-percent operating margin target two years earlier than anticipated. We are pleased our performance is creating greater stockholder value, as evidenced by our increased market capitalization this past year.

“We had strong sales growth in every geographic region and product category, and notably, we recorded the best performance in North America in a decade, including excellent department store results. Our Company also established market leadership in China in prestige, and in the important fast growing travel retail channel the Company became the leader in skin care.

“In fiscal 2012, we will continue to do what has been successful: focus our creative ingenuity on the biggest product ideas and marketing opportunities, improve our High-Touch services, aggressively pursue growth in emerging markets and distribution channels and invest in our strategic modernization initiative. We have strong momentum that we will support with higher investment spending, and intend to continue to gain share globally and increase profitability. Based on our conviction in our strategy and long-term outlook, we are extending our financial goals to fiscal 2014 and raising our operating margin target to between 14.5 percent and 15 percent."

The Company's record performance was due to stronger overall business, particularly from the Company's largest brands, helped by a weaker U.S. dollar. The Company posted strong across-the-board sales gains in its geographic regions and major product categories. Sales also increased in all major product categories within each region. Sales growth was particularly strong in the United States, travel retail and emerging markets. These results reflect solid increases from higher-margin product launches and the positive impact of more effective advertising spending. The higher results also reflect a favorable comparison to the prior year, which included a charge for returns related to the Company's long-term perfumery strategy in the Europe, the Middle East & Africa region of approximately $31 million.

To view the exhausted press release with financials on skin care, makeup, fragrance, hair care and regional data, click here.

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