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Makeup and perfumes are hot again

As vaccination campaigns progress and people begin to socialise more, cosmetic and fashion labels are seeing a rise in sales

Wherever you look, shoppers can’t seem to get enough luxury fashion and cosmetic goods.
Wherever you look, shoppers can’t seem to get enough luxury fashion and cosmetic goods. (Agencies)

Maybelline owner L'Oreal has said sales growth had accelerated in the second quarter partly due to resurging makeup sales as covid-19 lockdowns ease, and salons used more professional products.

High-end fashion labels have benefited from booming Chinese and US demand in recent quarters, helping revenues at luxury goods groups like LVMH bounce back, and L'Oreal posted similar trends as vaccination campaigns progress and people begin to socialise more, reports Reuters.

The French group, which also owns brands like Lancome and makes Armani cosmetics, said sales of high-end perfumes were on the rise, while makeup revenues, which have been struggling for several years, were recovering.

Also read: Rolex, Gucci are gobbling up our covid-19 savings

New chief executive Nicolas Hieronimus, a L'Oreal veteran who took the helm in May, told Le Figaro newspaper that cosmetics and fragrances sales had yet to recover to pre-2020 levels, although the group's overall revenues are now growing versus 2019.

Some of the L'Oreal divisions that have faltered compared to others, such as the consumer goods unit that houses products sold in supermarkets, benefited from the makeup uptick. The professional products division that sells to hair salons also posted a big revenue jump.

L'Oreal had relied on its e-commerce business during lockdowns last year to reach consumers, who lapped up hair care treatments and skin creams, but store closures hurt sales.

Overall group sales reached 7.6 billion euros ($9.03 billion) in the second quarter, growing by 33.5% when stripping out currency swings and acquisitions. That was up from 10.2% like-for-like sales growth in the previous three months, and beat a consensus for 27.5% growth cited by Credit Suisse, states the Reuters report.

Hieronimus said in a statement there would be more product launches in the second half of 2021.

Operating margins rose to 19.7% of sales by the end of the first half, with operating profit up 26.8% to 3 billion euros.

Few weeks ago, the French beauty and personal care products major L'Oreal announced elevation of four top executives from its India management team to regional leadership roles in South Asia, Middle-East and North Africa (SAPMENA) zone, reports PTI.

As part of the changes, the role of Aalok Oke, who is the director of India operations, has been expanded to deputy director (operations), SAPMENA region, the company said in a statement.

Similarly, Kavita Angre, director (consumer and market insights and media), L'Oréal India will now head consumer and market insights for SAPMENA and she will also be responsible for merger and acquisition opportunities in the region, it added. Yogesh Suradkar will head research and innovation for India and SAPMENA, while Rajesh Gopal will take on the role of chief information officer (CIO) for Middle East and North Africa, in addition to his responsibilities as CIO India, the statement said.

Commenting on the elevations, L'Oreal India Managing Director Amit Jain said, "It is testimony to India's unique position as a talent hub for L'Oréal globally."

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