PZ Cussons has reported a healthy rise in profits for the past year, thanks to its new tanning and beauty business and growing its share of the UK soap market.

Pre-tax profits at the Imperial Leather maker hit £108.9m for the year to 31 May, an increase of 7% on the previous term’s figure of £101.8m. Sales were up 6.4% from £771.6m last year to £820.7m.

The increase follows the company’s acquisition last year of the St Tropez self-tanning brand. It subsequently set up a new beauty division also including its Charles Worthington and The Sanctuary brands.

Chairman Richard Harvey suggested the company was likely to hike prices in the year ahead to combat rising ingredients costs.

“The Group has delivered a 7% increase in pre-tax profits… despite difficult trading conditions in a number of markets and significant increases in raw material costs,” Harvey said.

“Initiatives are underway to counter the impact of higher raw material prices and, with the spending power of consumers under increasing pressure, new product and pricing strategies are being tailored accordingly.”

Read more
Outlook good for premium brands, says PZ Cussons (9 June 2011)
Fake tan defies spending crunch for PZ Cussons (14 April 2011)