PARIS — Groupe Clarins posted second-quarter 2006 consolidated net sales of 236.3 million euros, or $290.9 million at average exchange rates, flat year-over-year. On a like-for-like basis, the company’s net sales rose 8.4 percent.

For the first half ended June 30, Clarins registered net consolidated sales of 474.6 million euros, or $584.2 million, up 3 percent versus the prior-year period. On a constant basis, the increase was 8.5 percent.

Clarins’ beauty division generated net sales of 321.4 million euros, or $395.6 million, an 11.6 percent rise. At comparative group structure and constant exchange rates, sales were up 9.9 percent. The company said the division’s growth was thanks largely to its well-received launches in the second quarter, including skin care products such as Total Eye Concentrate and Skin Renew Whitening Program, plus makeup, such as Express Compact Foundation and Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch.

Clarins’ fragrance division rang up net sales of 153.2 million euros, or $188.6 million, down 11.3 percent. The company attributes this drop to the end of its distribution agreement with Procter & Gamble in the U.S. on Dec. 31, 2005. On a like-for-like basis, Clarins’ fragrance sales increased 5.5 percent. New and classic fragrances from the Thierry Mugler and Azzaro brands helped spur the division’s organic growth, according to the company.

Exchange rate fluctuations helped Clarins’ net sales by 1.8 percent on a comparable basis in the half.

Net sales by geographic zone were 297 million euros, or $365.6 million, up 7.1 percent in Europe; 85.8 million euros, or $105.6 million, down 17.2 percent in North America; 55.3 million euros, or $68.1 million, up 20.6 percent in Asia, and 36.5 million euros, or $44.9 million, up 8 percent in the rest of the world.

In a statement, Clarins called its first-half turnout “excellent,” and said its board upholds the year-end target of 6 percent growth on a like-for-like basis.

For the second half of 2006, the company’s priority remains its beauty division, particularly skin care.

This story first appeared in the July 28, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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