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L'Oreal H1 Profit Rises - Update

French cosmetics giant L'Oreal SA (LRLCY.PK), Thursday reported an increase in profit for the first half of 2013, attributed largely to the higher demand for its products in North America and emerging markets, especially Asia Pacific and Latin America.

Chief Executive Jean-Paul Agon said, "In the first half, in a market whose growth slowed down slightly, L'Oréal has continued to record good sales dynamics, and achieved further growth in profits."

L'Oreal's first-half profit rose to 1.71 billion euros or 2.81 euros per share from 1.63 billion euros or 2.69 euros per share a year ago. Adjusted earnings for the six-month period improved to 2.94 euros per share from 2.75 euros per share.

Sales for the first half of 2013, grew 4.7 percent to 11.74 billion euros from 11.21 billion euros last year. On a like-for-like basis, revenues were up 5.4 percent.

Sales from new markets grew 7.0 percent, reflecting increases across Asia Pacific, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Africa and Middle East. The emerging market growth can be attributed to Asia Pacific, where sales rose 5.1 percent to 2.24 billion euros. Sales at Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Africa and Middle East rose 9.6 percent, 6.7 percent and 12.3 percent, respectively.

Sales in North America rose 6.7 percent to 2.74 billion euros from last year. Sales from Western Europe inched up 1.6 percent to 3.90 billion euros.

Cosmetic segment sales for the first half climbed 4.9 percent, driven mainly by growth across consumer products, L'Oreal Luxe, and active cosmetics businesses.

Body Shop segment sales dropped 1.4 percent and dermatology was up 3.3 percent.

L'Oreal reported second-quarter sales of 5.81 billion euros, up 4.2 percent from last year. On a like-for-like basis, sales were up 5.2 percent.

Moving ahead, Agon said, "We are confirming our targets for 2013 and remain confident in the Group's ability to once again outperform the market, and to achieve a further year of growth in sales, results and profitability."

LRLCY.PK is currently trading at $32.60, down $0.18 or 0.55%.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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