Unilever has announced its first quarter 2022 trading statement that shows there was an underlying sales growth of 7.3%.
Turnover increased by 11.8%.
Underlying sales in beauty and personal care grew 7.1% in the quarter, driven by price and continued strong growth in prestige beauty and vitamins, minerals and supplements.
Deodorants posted high single-digit growth.
Hair posted mid-single-digit growth driven by both styling and wash and care.
Skin cleansing delivered high single-digit growth with Dove, Lux and Lifebuoy performing well. Skin care grew low single-digit driven by North Asia and South Asia while sales in North America were flat.
Prestige beauty had another quarter of double digit-growth, on top of a very strong prior year comparator, when the health and beauty channel re-opened.
Hourglass and Living Proof started strongly into the year supported by the premium hair and makeup categories bouncing back.
Underlying sales growth in 2022 is expected to be toward the top end of the previously guided range of 4.5% to 6.5%.
Underlying operating margin for the first half is expected to be within the company's guided 2022 range of 16% to 17%.
Alan Jope, CEO of Coty, said:
We are executing well in a very challenging input cost environment. Underlying sales growth of 7.3% was driven by strong pricing, with a limited impact on volume in the quarter. This performance was delivered against the backdrop of significant rises in input costs that have further accelerated through the first three months of the year, and the human tragedy of the war in Ukraine. The delivery of another solid quarter of sales growth builds on the improved growth momentum that we achieved in 2021 and is underpinned by Unilever’s increased focus on operational excellence as well as disciplined adherence to our chosen strategic priorities. We are maintaining strong investment in our top brands, growing our $13 billion+ Euro brands by 8.8% in the quarter.
e-commerce sales now represent 14% of turnover following another quarter of strong double-digit growth. Our priority markets of the USA, India and China all grew competitively. We continue to reshape our portfolio into high growth spaces, with prestige beauty and functional nutrition again growing strongly. We remain on track to deliver the previously announced, simpler, more category-focused organization structure on 1 July 2022. There is more to do as we navigate our business through unprecedented cost inflation, but we are making good progress. We are committed to sustaining this step-up in our growth and competitiveness.