UNILEVER NUMBERS: Unilever reported Thursday its first-quarter profits from continuing operations rose 5 percent, to 1.05 billion euros, or $1.38 billion at average exchange. Its turnover was flat year-on-year at 9.53 billion euros, or $12.49 billion, in the three-month period ended March 31. At constant exchange rates, profits gained 9 percent and sales increased 5 percent. By region, turnover grew 2.1 percent in Europe, to 3.54 billion euros, or $4.64 billion; they were down 5.5 percent in the Americas, to 3.23 billion euros, or $4.23 billion, and they rose 4 percent in Asia/Africa, to 2.75 billion euros, or $3.6 billion. Underlying sales growth was up 3.6 percent, 3.2 percent and 11.8 percent, respectively.

FIRMENICH ACQUISITION: Flavors and fragrances supplier Firmenich has agreed to buy the flavors division of Danish food supplier Danisco for about 730 million Swiss francs, or $601 million at current exchange. The acquisition is expected to expand Firmenich's product offering and market coverage, particularly in vanilla, ice cream and beverage bases, and reinforce its position in citrus, naturals and the dairy segment, the firm said in a statement. The purchase will "enlarge the creative scope of [Firmenich's] perfumers and flavorists," Firmenich stated, adding it will "be creating an innovation center in the south of France, specifically designed to further develop its expertise in natural fragrance and flavor extracts." The deal is expected to close at the end of next month.

CHANEL MOVE: Chanel Parfums Beauté's Comité d'Entreprise (Work's Committee) has approved a project proposed by the company that aims for an increase in employment. As reported, France's labor union, the Confédération Générale de Travail, had called for protests against the transfer of Chanel's lipstick production from the Paris suburb of Pantin to the company's factories in Chamant and in Compiègne, both in the Oise region of northern France. The union had believed the move would cause layoffs. According to Chanel, its project, dubbed Horizon 2009, will create 53 jobs at the other sites, resulting in an increase of employment overall in the next two years. Chanel has 3,500 employees in France.

AWARD SEASON: A 300-strong bevy of beauty executives gathered here last week for the 2007 Cosmetic Executive Women U.K. Beauty Awards. Winners included classic products — such as Chanel No. 5, which picked up the best classic prestige women's scent accolade, and Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Lotion, which won the best classic mass skin-care product category. New products were also lauded — including Hermès' Terre d'Hermès, named best new prestige men's scent, and Max Factor's Masterpiece Mascara, which took the prize for best new mass makeup product. The winning items, voted on by CEW members in 21 product categories, will be promoted in World Duty Free, Harrods and House of Fraser stores.L'OREAL CHALLENGE: More than 44,000 students from 128 countries took part in this year's edition of L'Oréal's e-Strat Challenge, the online business strategy competition for undergraduate and MBA students that is used as a recruitment tool for the French beauty firm. In the Paris final round on Thursday, students from Germany's Technische Universitat Bergakademie Freiberg beat teams from Turkey and Indonesia to take first place in the undergraduate competition. In the MBA category, Switzerland's IMD won first place, trumping teams from the U.K., Taiwan and Brazil. L'Oréal executives — Geoff Skingsley, executive vice president of human resources, and Béatrice Dautresme, executive vice president of corporate communications and external affairs — chaired the jury panels. Since e-Strat Challenge's launch in 2000, L'Oréal has recruited 256 students from the competition.

REVLON WALK: Revlon is kicking off its 10th annual Entertainment Industry Foundation Revlon Run/Walk for Women in Times Square this Saturday. More than 40,000 people are expected to participate to raise money to support women's cancer research, counseling and outreach programs. The bicoastal event will be hosted by Jesse Martin of "Law & Order: SVU." Other special guests will be Mandy Moore, Meredith Vieira and Chaka Khan. The event has raised about $45 million dollars since its inception 13 years ago.

SELF HONORS: Self Magazine held its eighth annual Healthy Beauty Awards at the Bryant Park Grill on Tuesday. More than 1,100 readers tested 1,368 beauty products that were launched in the past year. The testers narrowed the list down to 85 winning products in five categories — face, body, makeup, hair and sun.

ARROJO DONATION: Nick Arrojo is keeping his New York salon, Arrojo Studio, open on Sunday, May 6, to raise funds for the New Orleans Recovery Initiative. For the second year in a row, Arrojo will donate all of the day's proceeds to the cause. Haircuts, normally priced from $65 to $400, will be $50, and hair color will be discounted from $110 to $70. Last year, Arrojo Studio raised $10,000 for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

SALON UPDATE: Celebrity hairstylist Matthew Yates has given OGGI Hair Salon in Washington a makeover with a new name and look. Scheduled to reopen this Sunday, the salon has been renamed My Hair Suite at Skin Beauty Lounge, and has been renovated to have an urban chic decor. Yates joined the salon in March.BOO FOR ADULTS: Children's skin and hair care brand Noodle & Boo is moving into adulthood this fall with a line for mothers. The line will include stretch-mark cream, moisturizing mist and bath oil. The fragrance and packaging are still being developed for the adult line, but Noodle & Boo founder Christine Burger said the youthful pink of the children's packaging would be dropped. Burger's aim is to sell the adult products in retailers that have had success with Noodle & Boo, including Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom. She is expanding the reach of Noodle & Boo's core children's line and has recently inked a deal with eFolium to distribute products in South Korean luxury department stores. Noodle & Boo, based in San Jose, Calif., expects to generate $1.5 million in sales this year.

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