Nivea faces up to profit wrinkle
BEIERSDORF, the maker of Nivea face creams, reported a smaller-than-expected 14pc rise in profits for 2012 and kept its dividend stable – disappointing investors who had hoped for more.
Under its new CEO, Stefan Heidenreich, the group has speeded up restructuring and given all its Nivea products a single logo. It is focusing on new products and markets.
The company raised its sales forecasts twice in swift succession at the end of last year. In January, it reported a 4.7pc rise in 2012 sales as markets such as Russia and Brazil helped counter a weak climate in Europe.
Beiersdorf yesterday reported 2012 comparable earnings before interest and tax of €735m, against analyst expectations of €749m for the year as a whole. It held its dividend at 70 cent, compared with expectations of 85 cent.
Market analyst Heino Ruland, of Ruland Research, said the full-year numbers were not convincing.
Shares in the group are at record highs and trade at a multiple of 27.7 times forecast earnings, compared with an average of 16.9 for its peer group.
Beiersdorf said it expected to grow sales faster than the market in 2013 and that its EBIT margin, which stood at 12.2pc at the end of 2012, would grow in both 2013 and 2014. (Reuters)