Estée Lauder Companies raises forecast for beauty amid strongest holiday quarter on record

By Becky Bargh | 7-Feb-2022

Demand for skin care and make-up powered the historic quarter for the cosmetics owner

Estée Lauder Companies (ELC) has raised its forecasts for 2022 on the back of a record-breaking holiday quarter.

The MAC, Clinique and Aveda maker achieved US$5.54bn in sales for the three months ended 31 December, a 14% increase on 2020’s results.

Demand for skin care and make-up powered the successful quarter, which saw sales reach $3.1bn and $1.3bn respectively.

Fragrance experienced a 29% increase in sales compared with 2020, primarily due to the success of the category in China.

Meanwhile, sales of its hair care brands were up 17%, followed by skin care (12%) and make-up (11%).

As a result, the cosmetics Goliath has boosted its sales outlook for Q3 of fiscal 2022 to between 10% and 12%.

Full fiscal year net sales, ELC predicts, will rise between 13% and 16%, compared with the previous year, an increase on the 12% to 15% reported in November 2021.

“We achieved record sales and profitability in the second quarter of fiscal 2022, empowered by the timeless desirability of our brands and despite accelerated volatility and variability, as well as supply chain challenges from the pandemic,” said ELC’s President and CEO, Fabrizio Freda.

“Every category, region and major channel expanded, showcasing the strength of our multiple engines of growth strategy.

“We seized the favourable dynamics in skin care, fragrance, developed markets in the west and brick-and-mortar, and continued to prosper in the east with Chinese consumers, as well as in global travel retail and global online.”

In November last year, the beauty multinational warned that it would have to hike prices of its brands’ products to deal with the difficulties facing global supply chains.

Port congestion, labour, container shortages and shipment delays were named as key challenges that would negatively impact the business in the new year.

Along with hiking cosmetic prices, ELC said it would turn to air freight to bypass crowded ports, while ships that are used will be streamlined.

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