BEAUTY CARE

Revlon appoints new president, CEO

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK Revlon’s board of directors has elected Alan Ennis president and CEO, succeeding David Kennedy, who will become vice chairman. News of the move, which was described as a “planned transition,” came as the beauty company posted a 7.8% boost in first-quarter net sales in the United States, thanks in large part to increased sales of Revlon and Almay color cosmetics and Revlon ColorSilk hair color.

Ennis previously served as Revlon’s EVP, CFO and president of Revlon International. In addition to serving as Revlon’s vice chairman, Kennedy also will serve as a senior EVP at MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, Revlon’s largest shareholder. Both Ennis and Kennedy will remain on the company’s board of directors.

In addition, Chris Elshaw, who has served as EVP and general manager of the U.S. region, has been elected EVP and COO. Steven Berns has been elected EVP, CFO and treasurer. The appointments of Ennis, Kennedy and Elshaw are effective May 1. Berns will join the company later in May.

Kennedy has served as the company’s president and CEO since September 2006. In March 2006, he was elected CFO.

“This planned leadership transition ensures that we have highly capable executives to continue to lead our business. I am most confident that Alan is best positioned to lead the company, as he has strong leadership capability, strategic ability and financial acumen,” stated Kennedy. “In addition, Chris and Steven are well-equipped to assume their respective roles. Alan and Chris, along with the other senior management team that make up the operating committee, will provide the company with outstanding leadership.”

The news came as Revlon announced that net sales in the United States totaled $191 million, an increase of $13.8 million, or 7.8%, compared with $177.2 million in the year-ago period. First quarter 2009 net sales benefited from higher pipeline shipments of first half and some second half 2009 new color cosmetics products, as a result of timing of shipments and a more extensive new product lineup, including Revlon ColorStay Ultimate Liquid Lipstick.

Total sales for the quarter were $303.3 million, compared with $311.7 million in the year-ago period. Excluding unfavorable foreign currency fluctuations, net sales increased by 3.8%.

Net income for the quarter was $12.7 million, or 25 cents per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $2.5 million, or 5 cents per share, last year.

Net income in the current quarter benefited from lower interest expense, a gain on the repurchase of senior notes and lower income tax expense, partially offset by higher foreign currency losses and higher pension expense. First quarter 2008 net loss included a gain of $6 million related to the sale of a non-core trademark.

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BEAUTY CARE

Mintel Beauty Innovation affirms ‘recessionista’ trend

BY Antoinette Alexander

CHICAGO The years of indulging every beauty whim appear to have fallen by the wayside, as shoppers watch their dollars in light of the current economic crunch. As a result, Mintel Beauty Innovation predicted that “econo-chic” is the big trend for 2009.

“Cosmetic companies are quickly responding to the needs of the Recessionista,” stated Taya Tomasello, senior analyst for Mintel Beauty Innovation. “Effective and affordable multi-use products, and products offering convenience, allow women to continue using their favorite brands, but at a reduced cost.”

Mintel added that those products claiming multiple benefits or uses in one bottle are becoming especially popular, as are convenient products for busy beauty mavens on the go. Mintel found that 27% of skin care products launched in the first quarter of 2009 boasted “convenience” claims.

It is predicted that drug stores and discount retailers will fare well in this challenging market. Women will remain brand loyal to masstige and prestige products, but will likely slim their repertoire to only a few of their favorites, according to Mintel.

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Makeup co. to be sold to private equity firm

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK High-end makeup brand Stila Cosmetics is to be sold to private equity firm Patriarch Partners, according to published reports.

The New York-based firm is looking to acquire Stila from Wachovia Corp. and CIT Group for an undisclosed sum.

Glendale, Calif.-based Stila has changed hands several times over the past decade. Estee Lauder snapped up the brand from founder Jeanine Lobell in 1999, and then in 2006 sold it to Sun Capital Partners. Wachovia Corp. and CIT Group ended up taking over Stila through a foreclosure sale.

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