The Procter & Gamble Company announced net sales growth of 9% to $21.6 billion for the second quarter of 2008. Sales were up behind strong volume growth from continued success on key product initiatives and double-digit organic growth in developing regions. Organic volume increased 6% and organic sales were up 5% for the quarter. Diluted earnings per share increased 17% to $0.98 per share, above the top end of the company's $0.95 to $0.97 per share guidance range. Earnings grew as topline growth and continued Gillette synergy benefits more than offset higher commodity costs.
"This quarter is another demonstration of P&G's capability to deliver strong results in a difficult competitive and commodity cost environment," said A.G. Lafley, chairman of the board and CEO, P&G. "Solid topline growth and a sharp focus on cost control are driving strong profit and cash generation. Looking ahead, we are confident that the strength of the company's brand portfolio, initiative pipeline and productivity program will enable P&G to continue delivering at or ahead of its targets."
Beauty net sales increased 10% during the quarter to $5.1 billion and organic sales grew 5%. Net sales were up behind three percent volume growth, a 6% favorable foreign exchange impact and a positive mix impact driven primarily by strong growth in skin care and prestige fragrance divisions. Organic volume in prestige fragrances was up double-digits with continued strong results on Hugo Boss and Dolce & Gabbana. Skin care volume increased high-single digits behind Olay Definity and Regenerist. Hair care volume was up low-single digits as strong results on Head & Shoulders were partially offset by softness in professional hair care. Net earnings in beauty were up 10% to $883 million behind sales growth. Higher commodity costs and increased marketing spending were offset by lower overhead costs as a percent of sales.
Grooming net sales increased 9% to $2.2 billion behind seven percent volume growth. Blades & razors division volume was up double-digits, led by double-digit developing region growth behind the successful expansion of Fusion. In developed regions, high-single digit growth in North America behind Fusion and Venus Breeze more than offset the base period impact of pipeline volume related to the Fusion launch in several Western European markets. In Braun, mid-single digit growth in male and female hair removers was more than offset by lower volume in home appliances resulting from supply constraints at a contract manufacturer, a de-emphasis of the home appliances business in the U.S. and the divestiture of thermometer and blood pressure devices. Net sales for the segment benefited from a seven percent favorable foreign exchange impact, but were negatively impacted by mix resulting primarily from disproportionate developing region growth. Net earnings in Grooming were up 11% for the quarter to $429 million primarily behind sales growth and lower overhead costs, which more than offset lower gross margin on Braun.
P&G also announced plans to separate its coffee business and create an independent company named The Folgers Coffee Company.