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PZ Cussons’ Half-Year Profit Falls As Demand Softens, Costs Rise

Soap-maker PZ Cussons announced on Wednesday that its first-half profit fell from a year earlier, as demand for its hand wash and sanitisers dipped from the heights hit during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rising Inflationary Pressures

The maker of Imperial Leather soap and Carex hand wash warned of rising inflationary pressures that could increase its expenses, but reiterated that adjusted pre-tax profit for the year to May 2022 should fall within current market estimates.

“Commodity and freight costs show no sign of abating in the near term, and we continue to anticipate cost pressures into fiscal year 2023,” Jonathan Myers, chief executive officer, said in a statement.

Adjusted Profit Falls 

The Manchester-based company noted that its adjusted profit before tax from continuing operations fell by 8%, to £32 million ($43.4 million), in the six months ended November, from £34.9 million a year earlier.

Still, the group’s revenue returned to growth in the second quarter, after having fallen by 9% in the three months prior, Reuters reported.

PZ Cussons also approved an interim dividend of 2.67 pence per share.

Celebrity Endorsements

On 22 September 2021, PZ Cussons announced that sales of St Tropez, the faux-tan brand made popular by reality TV star Kim Kardashian, had benefitted from a campaign featuring model and television presenter Ashley Graham in the United States.

The company noted that the campaign was ‘partially offsetting a decline in the UK personal-care business’.

News by Reuters, edited by Donna Ahern, Checkout. For more A-brand news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.

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