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Britain's PZ Cussons Flags Challenging Months Ahead As Costs Surge

Soap maker PZ Cussons Plc on Wednesday warned of challenging months ahead as input costs in the consumer sector are on the rise and household budgets may come under pressure amid broadening inflationary risks.

Third-Quarter

The Manchester-based company reported third-quarter like-for-like revenue up 8.5%, compared with a year-ago period, and nearly 14% higher from pre-pandemic levels.

"While the coming months will continue to be challenging for us and the wider consumer goods sector, the strength of our brands and our strategic progress gives me confidence in the long-term prospects for the business," Jonathan Myers, chief executive officer said in a statement.

Consumer Price Increase 

British consumer price inflation leapt to 7.0% in March, its highest since March 1992, official figures showed on Wednesday, intensifying the cost-of-living squeeze faced by households.

The maker of Imperial Leather soap and Carex hand wash said higher prices charged by the company partially offset cost headwinds in the third quarter.

PZ Cussons stood pat on its full-year outlook, and forecast like-for-like revenue and adjusted pre-tax profit to be within its current expectations.

Childs Farm Acquisition

Earlier this year, the company announced the acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Childs Farm, a baby and child personal care brand.

As a result of the acquisition, PZ Cussons now holds around 92% of the Childs Farm business, for a total consideration of £36.8 million (€43.8 million) with an agreed path to full ownership by the end of May 2025.

Products under the Childs Farm brand include bath and shower, skincare and haircare products, all of which are tailored for sensitive skin and fit well into PZ Cussons' strategy of 'Building Brands for life, today and for future generations', according to CEO Jonathan Myers.

News by Reuters, edited by Donna Ahern, Checkout. For more supply chain stories, click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.

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