Finanzas: Estée Lauder Delivers Strong Fiscal Year 2016 Results

 

– Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year Reported Net Sales Increase 5% and 4%, Respectively; Adjusted Constant Currency Net Sales Rise 7% in Both Periods –

– Full-Year Reported EPS Increases 5%, Adjusted Constant Currency EPS Rises 13% –

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– Strong Fiscal 2017 Sales and Earnings Forecasted –

The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. (NYSE:EL) reported strong financial results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended June 30, 2016.

Fabrizio Freda, President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “Our fiscal 2016 performance gives us much to celebrate.

We again delivered strong constant currency net sales growth and double-digit adjusted constant currency EPS growth, reflecting the compelling products and services we bring to consumers around the world. We capitalized on shifting consumer preferences by leveraging our strength in makeup and positioning our Company to win in luxury fragrances. We nimbly allocated resources and made strategic investments in areas that gave us terrific results, including emerging markets, our makeup category, and the online and specialty-multi retail channels. Importantly, we achieved these results against a backdrop of social and political instability, currency volatility and economic challenges.”

For the three months ended June 30, 2016, the Company reported net sales of $2.65 billion, a 5% increase compared with $2.52 billion in the prior-year period, posting across-the-board sales gains in all geographic regions and product categories, except fragrance. Fiscal 2016 fourth quarter sales benefited from innovative new products and double-digit growth in several emerging and developed markets. The Company also generated double-digit gains in its travel retail and online channels. Net earnings for the quarter were $93.5 million, compared with $153.0 million last year, and diluted net earnings per common share were $.25, compared with $.40 reported in the same prior-year period. The fiscal 2016 fourth quarter included the effect of restructuring and other charges described below.

Excluding the impact of foreign currency translation, net sales increased 7%. For the quarter, the negative impact of foreign currency translation on diluted net earnings per common share was $.01. Adjusting for the restructuring and other charges, diluted net earnings per common share for the three months ended June 30, 2016 were $.43, and in constant currency rose 11% to $.44.

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For the year, the Company achieved net sales of $11.26 billion, a 4% increase compared with $10.78 billion in the prior year. Net earnings for the year were $1.11 billion, a 2% increase compared with $1.09 billion last year, and diluted net earnings per common share rose 5% to $2.96, compared with $2.82 reported in the prior year. The fiscal 2016 full year included the effect of restructuring and other charges and adverse currency translation, and the comparison with the prior-year period was favorably impacted by accelerated retailer sales orders, described below.

For the year, the negative impact of foreign currency translation on diluted net earnings per common share was $.26. Adjusting for the restructuring and other charges, diluted net earnings per common share for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016 were $3.20, and in constant currency rose to $3.46.

Adjusting for the impact of the charges and the accelerated orders, net sales and diluted earnings per common share in constant currency for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016 would have increased 7% and 13%, respectively. Net sales in constant currency grew in each of the Company’s geographic regions and product categories.

Information about GAAP and non-GAAP financial measures, including reconciliation information, is included in this release.

Mr. Freda continued, “In fiscal 2017, we will aggressively pursue new opportunities to enhance our leadership position. We will continue to diversify our distribution toward the fastest growing channels, while further developing our mid-sized brands and the newest additions to our portfolio. With our Leading Beauty Forward initiative, we are laying the foundation for future growth by lowering our cost base, increasing our agility and investing behind our strengths and improving our go-to-market capabilities.

“We will also seek geographic and channel opportunities to reach even more consumers, while keeping a sharp focus on like-door growth. We expect our new product launches, digital programs, social media engagement and focused M&A activities to drive constant currency net sales growth of 6% to 8% and double-digit EPS growth over the next three years, excluding restructuring and other charges, consistent with our long-term objectives. For fiscal 2017, we are reflecting the significant external headwinds and volatility and forecasting constant currency sales growth of 6% to 7%. We will thoughtfully balance cost savings, sales leverage and reinvestment to position us to deliver constant currency double-digit EPS growth also this fiscal year.”

During the fiscal 2016 fourth quarter, the Company recorded restructuring and other charges of $101.0 million ($69.6 million after tax), equal to $.18 per diluted share in connection with its previously announced global technology infrastructure (GTI) and Leading Beauty Forward (LBF) initiatives.

During fiscal 2016, the Company recorded restructuring and other charges of $134.7 million ($91.3 million after tax), equal to $.24 per diluted share in connection with its GTI and LBF initiatives.

The fiscal 2016 full year comparison with the prior-year period was favorably impacted by the acceleration of sales orders from certain retailers of approximately $178 million in connection with the Company’s rollout of its last major wave of its Strategic Modernization Initiative (SMI) in July 2014 in certain of its locations. Those orders would have occurred in the Company’s fiscal 2015 first quarter. This amounted to approximately $127 million in operating income, equal to approximately $.21 per diluted share.

Net sales and operating income in each of the Company’s product categories were unfavorably impacted by the strength of the U.S. dollar in relation to most currencies. Total operating income in constant currency, before charges, increased 17%.

The change in net sales and operating income in the Company’s product categories were favorably impacted by the shift in orders from certain retailers due to the Company’s implementation of SMI and the Venezuela remeasurement charge, as previously mentioned.

Adjusting for these factors:

Reported net sales in skin care, makeup, fragrance and hair care would have increased/(decreased) (3)%, 8%, 3% and 4%, respectively.

Operating results in skin care, makeup, fragrance and hair care would have increased/(decreased) (7)%, 8%, (11)% and 36%, respectively.

Skin Care

Reported skin care net sales decreased, due to the unfavorable impact of foreign currency translation.
Contributing to sales were double-digit gains from La Mer, including new product introductions, such as Genaissance de La Mer The Serum Essence, The Renewal Oil and The Lifting Eye Serum, as well as strong growth from Origins reflecting increases in facial mask products. Incremental sales from recent acquisitions also contributed to the sales growth.

Partially offsetting these increases were lower skin care sales from Estée Lauder and Clinique, reflecting, in part, the overall global slowdown in the category. The decreases from Estée Lauder and Clinique were also due, in part, to lower sales in certain countries within the Asia/Pacific region, particularly Hong Kong.

Operating income increased, due to the favorable comparison of the fiscal 2015 accelerated orders. Adjusting for the accelerated orders operating income declined, with higher results from La Mer and Origins being more than offset by lower results from Estée Lauder and Clinique.

Makeup

Makeup generated outstanding net sales growth, primarily driven by strong double-digit increases from M•A•C, Smashbox and Tom Ford, as well as solid gains from Bobbi Brown. These sales increases resulted from new product offerings, as well as the broadening of the brands’ presence in a number of channels, including freestanding retail stores, travel retail and specialty-multi brand retailers to reach new consumers.

Makeup sales increased in the Estée Lauder and Clinique brands. Estée Lauder had higher sales from the Double Wear and Pure Color Envy product lines. Clinique posted higher makeup sales, reflecting recent product offerings, such as Beyond Perfecting foundation + concealer.

The Company’s makeup category is experiencing strong growth in product areas such as lipsticks and foundations, accelerated growth in certain geographic areas, such as the United Kingdom, and increased prestige makeup usage in Asia.

The increase in makeup operating income was primarily due to higher results from the Company’s makeup brands, as well as Estée Lauder and Clinique.

Fragrance

Net sales increased primarily due to strong double-digit gains from luxury brands Jo Malone London and Tom Ford and incremental sales from recent acquisitions.

Higher net sales from Jo Malone reflected the recent launches of Mimosa & Cardamom, strong growth from existing fragrances and brand expansion.

Increased sales from Tom Ford reflect the continued success of the Tom Ford Noir and Neroli Portofino line of fragrances, including new product launches and growth from existing fragrances.

Partially offsetting these increases were lower sales of certain Estée Lauder, Clinique and designer fragrances.

Fragrance operating income increased, due to the favorable comparison of the fiscal 2015 accelerated orders.

Adjusting for the accelerated orders, operating income declined, with higher results from Jo Malone and Tom Ford being more than offset by lower results from Estée Lauder and investments in certain recent acquisitions.

Hair Care

Hair care net sales growth reflects recent product launches, such as Invati Men, Shampure dry shampoo and the Thickening Tonic by Aveda.

Sales growth in Aveda was also driven by increases in salons, online and travel retail, and in Bumble and bumble from selective global expansion, primarily in specialty-multi brand retailers.

Hair care operating income increased, reflecting the higher net sales.

Net sales and operating income in each of the Company’s geographic regions were unfavorably impacted by the strength of the U.S. dollar in relation to most currencies.

The change in net sales and operating income in the Company’s geographic regions were favorably impacted by the shift in orders from certain retailers due to the Company’s implementation of SMI and the Venezuela remeasurement charge, as previously mentioned.

Adjusting for these factors:

Reported net sales in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East & Africa and Asia/Pacific would have increased/(decreased) 2%, 5% and (2)%, respectively.

Operating income in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East & Africa and Asia/Pacific would have increased/(decreased) (4)%, 3% and (3)%, respectively.

The Americas

In North America net sales increased, due to growth from most of the Company’s brands led by double-digit gains from Tom Ford, Jo Malone and Smashbox and solid growth from La Mer, M•A•C and Bobbi Brown. Increased makeup sales were partially offset by lower skin care and fragrance sales. The Estée Lauder and Clinique brands each posted double-digit growth in makeup for the year. Sales in the Company’s online business grew strong double digits.

Net sales were impacted by a decline in retail traffic in the United States, primarily related to mid-tier department stores that principally affected Estée Lauder and Clinique, as well as certain M•A•C freestanding stores, as a result of a decrease in tourism.

Foreign currency translation reduced reported sales by 3%, or approximately $101 million, with the largest impact affecting Canada, Brazil and Mexico.

On a reported basis, sales in Canada and Latin America each increased single-digits. In constant currency, sales in both markets rose double-digits. The strong growth in Latin America was led by Brazil and Mexico, primarily driven by M•A•C.

Operating income in the Americas increased, due to the favorable comparison of the fiscal 2015 accelerated orders. Adjusting for the accelerated orders, operating income declined, reflecting increased investments in advertising and promotion and retail store operations. Reported operating income was significantly impacted by adverse foreign currency translation.

Europe, the Middle East & Africa

As reported, virtually all countries recorded net sales growth, with many posting double-digit increases, led by the Middle East, Central Europe, Nordic and India, and solid growth in the United Kingdom, Germany and Italy.
In constant currency, sales growth in the region was exceptionally strong with virtually all countries generating double-digit sales gains.

The Company estimates that it continued to outperform prestige beauty in most markets in the region.
In travel retail, sales growth was generated on new launch initiatives, global airline passenger traffic growth, new consumer coverage and the launch of additional brands. Jo Malone, Tom Ford, M•A•C and Smashbox contributed sharply to the sales gains. The mix of travelers and their purchases are affected by currency fluctuations. The sales growth in travel retail was partially driven by the favorable comparison due to the fiscal 2015 accelerated orders.
Foreign currency translation reduced reported sales by 7%, or approximately $265 million, with the largest impact affecting the United Kingdom, Russia, South Africa, and Germany.

Operating income increased, led by higher operating results in travel retail, partially driven by the accelerated orders, Germany and the Middle East. Lower operating results were recorded primarily in the United Kingdom, France and Russia.

Asia/Pacific

On a reported basis, net sales decreased slightly, due to the unfavorable impact of foreign currency translation, which affected every market in the region. Foreign currency translation unfavorably impacted reported sales by 5%, or approximately $122 million, with the largest impact affecting Australia, China and Korea. Despite the negative currency, several markets including Japan, Australia, the Philippines and China posted reported sales gains.
Sales in constant currency increased in every country, except Hong Kong, including double-digit growth in Australia, the Philippines and New Zealand. Solid constant currency sales gains were recorded in Korea, Japan and China. The higher sales in China reflected sales gains in most brands and increased online activity.

In Hong Kong, the reduction in tourism from China continues to negatively impact business, particularly for the Estée Lauder, Clinique and La Mer brands.

In Asia/Pacific, operating income increased, due to the favorable comparison of the fiscal 2015 accelerated orders in Japan. Adjusting for the accelerated orders, operating income declined. Higher results in Australia, Korea, the Philippines and Taiwan were more than offset by lower results in Hong Kong and China.

Cash Flows from Operating Activities

For the 12 months ended June 30, 2016, net cash flows provided by operating activities was $1.79 billion, compared with $1.94 billion in the prior year.

The change resulted from the impact of the accelerated sales orders in the prior year in connection with the Company’s July 2014 SMI implementation, which created an unfavorable comparison in certain working capital components and the increase in net earnings.

Before the impact of the accelerated orders, the Company’s net cash flows provided by operating activities increased 1%.

Outlook for Fiscal 2017 First Quarter and Full Year

Global prestige beauty remains a vibrant industry estimated to grow approximately 4% to 5%. Social and political issues, currency volatility and economic challenges are affecting consumer behavior in certain countries, such as Hong Kong, France and some emerging markets. We are also cautious of the decline in retail traffic, primarily related to mid-tier department stores, as well as certain tourist-driven doors in the United States. The Company’s growth has consistently outpaced global prestige beauty and, despite these global issues, is expected to grow approximately two percentage points ahead of the industry for the fiscal year. In the fiscal 2017 first quarter, we expect especially strong external headwinds when compared with the previous year.

The Company previously announced a multi-year initiative named Leading Beauty Forward to build on its strengths and better leverage its cost structure to free resources for investment to continue its growth momentum. Leading Beauty Forward is designed to enhance the Company’s go-to-market capabilities, reinforce its leadership in global prestige beauty and continue creating sustainable value.

Full Year Fiscal 2017

Net sales are forecasted to increase between 6% and 7% versus the prior-year period.

Foreign currency translation is expected to negatively impact sales by less than 1% versus the prior-year period.

Net sales are forecasted to grow between 6% and 7% in constant currency.

Reported diluted net earnings per share are projected to be between $3.20 and $3.30.

The Company expects to take charges associated with previously approved restructuring activities in fiscal 2017 of approximately $80 million to $100 million, equal to $.14 to $.18 per diluted common share. The Company expects to take further charges in fiscal 2017 as additional initiatives under Leading Beauty Forward are approved.

Diluted net earnings per share before charges associated with restructuring activities are projected to be between $3.38 and $3.44.

The negative currency impact on the sales growth equates to about $.08 of earnings per share. On a constant currency basis before charges associated with restructuring activities, diluted earnings per share are expected to increase between 8% and 10%.

First Quarter Fiscal 2017

Net sales are forecasted to increase between 1% and 2% versus the prior-year period.

Foreign currency translation is expected to negatively impact sales by approximately 1% versus the prior-year period.

Net sales are forecasted to grow between 2% and 3% in constant currency.

Reported diluted net earnings per share are projected to be between $.65 and $.71.

The Company expects to take charges associated with previously approved restructuring activities in its fiscal 2017 first quarter of approximately $35 million to $45 million, equal to $.06 to $.08 per diluted common share.

Diluted net earnings per share before charges associated with restructuring activities are projected to be between $.73 and $.77.

The approximate 1% negative currency impact on the sales growth equates to about $.03 of earnings per share.

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Fuente: Seeking Alpha


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