Sustained growth in sales
Solid increase in profits

Sales: 20.34 billion euros, +5.1% like-for-like*Strong improvement in operating margin: +50 bps** at 16.2%Record gross margin: +40 bps at 71.2%Net earnings per share***: +7.8%Increase in dividend****: +11% at 2 eurosConfidence in another year of sales and profit growth.

The Board of Directors of L'Oréal met on February 13, 2012 under the chairmanship of Jean-Paul Agon and in the presence of the Statutory Auditors. The Board closed the consolidated financial statements and the financial statements for 2011.

Commenting on the annual results, Mr Jean-Paul Agon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of L'Oréal, said:
"2011 was a solid year of development, which has made the group even stronger. In a cosmetics market whose global trend was favourable, L'Oréal achieved sustained sales growth and confirmed its position as the world leader in beauty.
All divisions are expanding. L'Oréal Luxury in particular posted a very good year, especially thanks to Lancôme, Giorgio Armani and Kiehl's.
Internationalisation is continuing across all divisions. The group is pursuing its conquest of the New Markets, with Asia and Latin America leading the way, and is making clear progress in North America. 2012 will be a symbolic year, as the New Markets are set to become the group's number one geographic zone.
These performances demonstrate the relevance of our strategic thrusts and provide further confirmation of the key role played by research, innovation and creativity in our industry.
2011 was also another year of solid construction for our operating profit. The strong growth in results reflects the virtuous dynamics set in motion: operational efficiency has advanced in all fields of activity, enabling us to prepare well for the future, and the profitability of the New Markets zone increased substantially.
The good quality of these results means that we are more confident than ever in the group's ability to achieve sustainable and profitable growth. We are well equipped to succeed in our strategy of universalising beauty and to achieve another year of sales and profit growth in 2012."

The Board of Directors has decided to propose to the Annual General Meeting of April 17, 2012 the payment of a dividend of 2 euros per share, an increase of +11% compared with 2010.

"Through its proposal to pay a dividend of 2 euros, the Board of Directors is expressing its confidence in the group's outlook and its strong potential for development," said Mr Jean-Paul Agon, at the end of the Board meeting.

* +4.3% based on reported figures
** basis points
*** diluted net earnings per share, based on net profit excluding non-recurring items after non-controlling interests.
**** proposed at the Annual General Meeting of April 17, 2012.

A - 2011 sales

Like-for-like, i.e. based on a comparable structure and identical exchange rates, the sales trend of the L'Oréal group was +5.1%.
The net impact of changes in consolidation amounted to +0.6%.
Currency fluctuations had a negative impact of -1.4%.
Growth at constant exchange rates was +5.7%.
Based on reported figures, the group's sales, at December 31, 2011, amounted to 20.343 billion euros, an increase of +4.3%.

Sales by operational division and geographic zone


4th quarter 2011At December 31, 2011
€m Growth€m Growth
Like-for-likeReported Like-for-likeReported
By operational division







Professional Products704.63.2%5.1%2,813.82.5%3.6%
Consumer Products2,405.24.1%3.9%9,835.24.5%3.2%
L'Oréal Luxury 1,350.46.9%7.3%4,800.18.2%6.5%
Active Cosmetics305.51.1%0.3%1,421.73.2%2.6%
Cosmetics total 4,765.74.5%4.8%18,870.85.0%4.0%
By geographic zone      
Western Europe1,748.3-0.6%-0.3%7,246.60.6%0.9%
North America1,122.65.6%7.6%4,406.25.5%2.7%
New Markets, of which:1,894.89.1%8.2%7,218.09.5%8.3%
-   Asia, Pacific975.312.7%15.6%3,619.513.0%13.4%
-   Eastern Europe355.0-3.0%-5.2%1,336.9-2.8%-4.4%
-   Latin America423.710.9%5.2%1,680.913.2%10.8%
-   Africa, Middle East140.915.7%7.2%580.710.5%4.1%
Cosmetics total 4,765.74.5%4.8%18,870.85.0%4.0%
The Body Shop264.47.6%6.4%767.64.2%1.7%
Group total5,255.75.1%5.6%20,343.15.1%4.3%

(1) Group share, i.e. 50%.

1) Cosmetics sales


In a generally sluggish market, the Professional Products Division achieved 2011 growth of +2.5% like-for-like and +3.6% based on reported figures. Growth based on constant exchange rates, including the impact of acquisitions, came out at +5.1%. Initiatives in hair colourants and haircare enabled the division to win market share in all zones.

  • Haircare growth was driven by the success of hair oils, with Mythic Oil from L'Oréal Professionnel, Elixir Ultime from Kérastase and Argan-6 oil by Redken. Fusio-Dose by Kérastase, the ultra-personalised made-to-measure salon haircare, and Total Results by Matrix, the accessible professional haircare range, are also contributing to growth.
    In hair colourants, L'Oréal Professionnel is continuing to roll out Inoa, and is reinventing tone-on-tone colour with Dialight and Diarichesse. Redken has created Color Fusion Extra Lift, a formula with unique lightening power, and Matrix is expanding in Asia thanks to SoColor (90ml) and Wonderbrown.
  • The division is continuing to improve its positions in the developed markets, with significant market share gains in Germany and the United Kingdom. The conquest of the luxury haircare segment is continuing with Kérastase and Shu Uemura Art of Hair. In the United States, the division posted positive growth, bolstered by the SalonCentric network.
    In the New Markets, the division is growing fast, particularly in Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. It is increasing its presence in all zones by investing in hairdresser training and rolling out innovations attuned to local beauty rituals and expectations, as exemplified by the launches of Oilthérapie in India and X-Tenso Care in Brazil.


The Consumer Products Division achieved growth of +4.5% like-for-like and +3.2% based on reported figures at end-2011. Maybelline posted another year of strong growth and L'Oréal Paris is accelerating.

L'Oréal Paris is launching strong initiatives in all categories. The renewal of the Elvive range and the success of Elvive Triple Resist enriched with Arginine, are galvanising the haircare segment in Europe. In make-up, the brand is standing out from the competition with Lash Architect mascara and Color Riche lipstick. The new hair colourant Sublime Mousse and the strong growth of skincare in China are also contributing to the brand's acceleration.
Maybelline is performing extremely well on all continents, with its Falsies Flared and Colossal Cat Eyes mascaras, Fit Me foundation, and Color Stay lipsticks.
Garnier is continuing its initiatives, particularly in skincare with its BB cream, Miracle Skin Perfector, in Europe, and Dark Spot Corrector in the United States.

In Western Europe, the division is winning market share in France, Germany and the Nordic countries. The situation is more difficult in the countries of the South.
In North America, the division is improving its positions thanks to haircare, make-up and skincare.
In the New Markets, the division is performing well in all zones, with the exception of Eastern Europe. In Asia, the division is continuing to grow strongly, particularly in facial skincare for both women and men. In Latin America, the division had a good year, particularly in Mexico, Argentina and Chile, thanks to the success of its deodorants and hair colourants.


Bolstered by a lively market trend and the dynamism of its major brands, L'Oréal Luxury recorded 2011 sales up by +8.2% like-for-like and +6.5% based on reported figures. In all regions, the division has major stand-out innovations, with Visionnaire from Lancôme taking pride of place.

Lancôme posted a year of strong growth, with the high-profile launch of Visionnaire, the first-ever fundamental skin corrector, protected by 20 patents and the winner of the Prix d'Excellence Marie-Claire. Meanwhile, the brand is continuing to grow thanks to its flagship products, Génifique, Rénergie and Teint Miracle. The new mascara Hypnôse Doll Eyes and the launch of the fragrance Trésor Midnight Rose also reflect the brand renewal now under way.
L'Oréal Luxury enjoyed an excellent year in facial skincare, with strong performances from Lancôme, the rapid expansion of Kiehl's on all continents, and the introduction of Régénessence skincare by Giorgio Armani, along with the initiatives of Biotherm.
Yves Saint Laurent is bringing out its new skincare line, Forever Youth Liberator. Its store sales are increasing thanks to Opium, L'Homme men's fragrances and the make-up lines.
The Giorgio Armani brand is being driven by the healthy trends of Acqua di Gio and Code Homme, and by the growing success of the women's fragrance Acqua di Gioia.
Loverdose by Diesel was ranked in Europe one of the best women's fragrance launches of the year.
The instrumental cosmetics brand Clarisonic, acquired in December, has joined the L'Oréal Luxury brand portfolio; it is the market leader in sonic technology skincare applications.

In Western Europe, L'Oréal Luxury ended the year well, particularly in France, driven by the dynamism of Lancôme, Kiehl's and Diesel.
In North America, the division recorded strong growth with its brands Lancôme, Yves Saint Laurent, Kiehl's, Giorgio Armani and Viktor & Rolf.
In the New Markets, L'Oréal Luxury is growing fast. Thanks to Lancôme, Kiehl's and Shu Uemura, the division is making substantial market share gains in Asia; it is also continuing to grow in Latin America, the Middle East and Eastern Europe.


In 2011, the Active Cosmetics Division grew by +3.2% like-for-like and +2.6% based on reported figures. With strong dynamism in Latin America, the United States and Africa, Middle East, the division is strengthening its position as number one in the worldwide dermocosmetics market.

The division's sales are increasing, thanks to the dynamism not only of La Roche Posay, but also of SkinCeuticals and Roger&Gallet.
La Roche Posay is growing on all continents, thanks in particular to Tolériane Ultra, skincare for highly sensitive and allergy-prone skin, and Cicaplast Baume B5 in the scarring segment.
Vichy is maintaining its world number one position, and carried out two major launches in Europe: Lift Activ Sérum 10 in anti-ageing skincare, and Dercos Aminexil in anti-hairloss haircare.
The strong growth of SkinCeuticals is continuing, both in its original market in the United States, and in Europe.
Finally, the internationalisation of Roger&Gallet is continuing, with strong growth in the countries it is moving into, and the highly successful launch of the fragrance Fleur d'Osmanthus.

The division's growth is being boosted by good performances in North America and in the New Markets, particularly Latin America and the Africa, Middle East zone. The very good scores of Innéov in Brazil, now the brand's number one market worldwide, are worth noting.
In Europe, the division's growth continues to reflect contrasting trends in different countries: positive in France, but more difficult in Southern Europe and in Eastern Europe, where difficulties in the pharmacies channel are continuing.
The broadening of distribution and the conquest of new health channels, such as drugstores and medispas, are an important element in the division's worldwide strategy.

Multi-division summary by geographic zone


In a very slightly positive market, L'Oréal recorded a growth rate of +0.6% like-for-like, with good growth rates in France, Germany and the United Kingdom, and in Travel Retail. Sales have been galvanised in this zone by Maybelline make-up and by L'Oréal Luxury. The situation remains more difficult in Southern Europe, and particularly in Greece and Portugal.


In North America, L'Oréal grew faster than the market, and recorded 2011 growth of +5.5% like-for-like. The Luxury, Consumer Products and Active Cosmetics Divisions all posted sustained growth. The Consumer Products Division is significantly outperforming the market trend, thanks in particular to Maybelline and Garnier. The recently acquired Essie brand had a very good year. Growth in the Professional Products Division is less substantial, but is nevertheless ahead of the professional market trend.


At December 31, 2011, the New Markets posted growth of +9.5% like-for-like and +8.3% based on reported figures. Excluding Japan, the New Markets recorded growth of +10.6% like-for-like, driven by the constant dynamism of Asia.

Asia, Pacific: L'Oréal achieved annual growth in Asia-Pacific of +13.0% like-for-like and +13.4% based on reported figures. If Japan is excluded, growth in this zone amounted to +16.1% like-for-like and +15.5% based on reported figures. Despite the disasters which hit Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Thailand during the year, the group is continuing to improve its positions throughout the zone, driven by markets whose dynamism remains intact. The group is advancing thanks to the very good scores of L'Oréal Luxury in Greater China and South Korea with Lancôme, Kiehl's, Shu Uemura and Biotherm. Consumer Products are also contributing to this dynamism thanks to L'Oréal Paris and Maybelline. L'Oréal is thus asserting its status as a skincare and make-up expert in all countries in this zone. Haircare made a good start in the emerging markets of South-East Asia.

Eastern Europe: At end-2011, the group is at -2.8% like-for-like in Eastern Europe. In a dismal economic context which is affecting all the countries in this zone, the group's divisions recorded contrasting levels of performance. The Professional Products Division and L'Oréal Luxury are improving their penetration. In the Consumer Products Division, a programme of carefully adapted initiatives is under way, for Garnier in particular.

Latin America: In 2011, L'Oréal achieved growth of +13.2% like-for-like in Latin America. Argentina, Mexico and Central America are the growth drivers in this zone. Brazil is still posting a solid trend. All the group's divisions recorded good performances, particularly the Active Cosmetics Division. The very good results of Maybelline make-up in the Consumer Products Division are worth noting.

Africa, Middle East: At December 31, 2011, Africa - Middle East achieved growth of +10.5% like-for-like. In this zone, growth is being driven by the countries of the Levant, the Gulf and Turkey, and by two recently created subsidiaries, Pakistan and Egypt. However, the situation is more contrasted in South Africa. All divisions are contributing to the dynamism of this expansion.

2) The Body Shop sales

In 2011, The Body Shop achieved solid sales growth at +4.2% like-for-like, with a sharp acceleration in the in the 4th quarter. Retail sales(1) also increased by +3.8%.

The Body Shop is further enhancing its militant approach to innovation, with launches including Brush with Fashion, a make-up collection created for young consumers, Earth lovers, a range of eco-designed, 100%-biodegradable shower gels, as well as White Musk Libertine, a fragrance based on animal-friendly musk and Community Fair Trade organic alcohol.

In 2011, The Body Shop achieved growth in Europe and North America and quickly expanded in the New Markets. The brand experienced strong growth in the Middle East, particularly in Saudi Arabia and Egypt, as well as in Asian countries such as India and Hong Kong, and in Eastern Europe. The brand now has 16 online stores and is continuing to grow at an accelerated rate in e-commerce. Finally, The Body Shop now has a robust presence in global Travel Retail outlets across 44 markets.

At the end of 2011, The Body Shop has a total of 2,748 stores, an addition of 143 since December 31, 2010.

(1) Retail sales: total sales to consumers through all channels, including franchisees.

3) Galderma sales

Galderma's sales increased by +8.4% like-for-like and +17.1% based on reported figures.

Galderma confirmed its dynamism thanks to the success of its innovative products which offset the negative impact of generics on the sales of Differin 0.1% gel and cream (acne) in the United States and Loceryl lacquer (onychomycosis) in Europe. The Epiduo (acne), Oracea (rosacea) and Cetaphil Restoraderm (therapeutic skincare, line specifically formulated for atopic skin) brands recorded very good scores. The acquisition of Q-Med and its flagship product Restylane, the launch of the Emervel range (hyaluronic acid dermal fillers) and the success of Azzalure (muscle relaxant) have helped Galderma become one of the leaders in the aesthetic and corrective dermatology market.

The expansion of Galderma in the New Markets, such as Brazil, Russia, and the Asian countries has contributed to this solid growth. Good performances in Germany and the United Kingdom are also worth noting.

Galderma continued to invest in R&D and manufacturing, thus assuring its strategic development in the three key segments: prescription products, OTC products and aesthetic and corrective medical solutions. 

B - Important events during the period 10/01/11 - 12/31/11

On November 10, L'Oréal USA and Pacific Bioscience Laboratories Inc. (PBL) signed a merger agreement. Founded in 2001, this company has developed a patented technology used in a range of products marketed under the Clarisonic brand that are proving extremely successful. The Clarisonic brand is the leader in the dynamic market for skincare devices and technologies. The acquisition was completed on December 15, 2011. In 2010, Pacific Bioscience Laboratories Inc. (PBL) achieved sales of $105 million.

On December 6, L'Oréal opened its new subsidiary in Kenya. Based in Nairobi, the subsidiary will be the hub for expanding the group's activities in East Africa, a region which also includes Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and Ethiopia. By opening new subsidiaries in Kenya and Nigeria, the L'Oréal group is reaffirming its confidence in the African region's growth potential.

On December 19, L'Oréal signed a memorandum of understanding with the state and city of Rio de Janeiro for the building of a Research and Innovation centre in an area adjacent to the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro Technology Park. The investment of around €30 million will serve to accelerate the growth of innovative products tailored for the Brazilian and Latin American markets that may potentially be marketed in other locations around the world.

C - 2011 Results

1) Operating profitability at 16.2% of sales

Consolidated profit and loss account: from sales to operating profit.

 €m% sales€m% sales



Cost of sales

-5,696.529.2%-5,851.5 28.8%

Gross profit


Research and development expenses


Advertising and promotion expenses


Selling, general and administrative expenses


Operating profit


Gross margin came out at 71.2% of sales, an improvement of 40 basis points compared with 2010.

Research expenses increased by 8.4%, representing 3.5% of sales. This latest increase reflects the strategic decision to make significant investments in research.

Advertising and promotion expenses came out at 30.9% of sales, which is identical to the 2010 level.

Selling, general and administrative expenses grew less rapidly than sales. At 20.6%, they improved by 20 basis points compared with 2010.

Overall, operating profit came out at 3,292.6 million euros, representing growth of 7.7%, reflecting a very significant improvement in profitability compared with 2010, at +50 basis points.

2) Operating profit by branch and division

 €m% sales€m% sales
By operational division    
Professional Products551.920.3%578.620.6%
Consumer Products1,764.618.5%1,859.018.9%
L'Oréal Luxury 790.517.5%926.319.3%
Active Cosmetics278.220.1%286.720.2%
Cosmetics divisions total3,385.318.7%3,650.619.3%
Cosmetics branch total2,872.415.8%3,104.416.5%
The Body Shop65.38.7%68.18.9%
Dermatology branch**119.219.8%120.117.0%
Group 3,056.915.7%3,292.616.2%

* Non-allocated = Central group expenses, fundamental research expenses, stock options and free grant of shares expenses and miscellaneous items. As a % of cosmetics sales.
** Group share, i.e. 50%.

Once again this year and as in 2010, all the divisions achieved growth in their operating profitability, particularly L'Oréal Luxury at +180 basis points.

The Body Shop improved its profitability in 2011.

Finally, Galderma had to face competition from generics on two major drugs, Differin 0.1% and Loceryl.

3) Profitability by geographic zone

Operating profit20102011
€m% sales€m% sales
Western Europe1,552.021.6%1,512.320.9%
North America708.516.5%810.118.4%
New Markets1,124.816.9%1,328.118.4%
Cosmetics zones total*3,385.318.7%3,650.619.3%

* Before non-allocated.

Profitability in Western Europe contracted slightly at 20.9%, returning to its 2009 level.

The profitability figures in the North America and New Markets zones once again increased substantially, with both reaching 18.4% of sales.

4) Net earnings per share**: €4.32

Consolidated profit and loss accounts: from operating profit to net profit excluding non-recurring items.


Operating profit


Financial revenues and expenses excluding dividends received


Sanofi dividends


Profit before tax excluding non-recurring items


Income tax excluding non-recurring items


Non-controlling interests


Net profit excluding non-recurring items after non-controlling interests




Net EPS** (€)


Net profit after non-controlling interests


Diluted net EPS after non-controlling interests (€)


Diluted average number of shares


* Net profit excluding non-recurring items after non-controlling interests does not include impairment of assets, restructuring costs, tax effects or non-controlling interests.
** Diluted net earnings per share excluding non-recurring items after non-controlling interests.

Total finance costs have once again this year declined very substantially, at 25.2 million euros. This latest reduction is the result of the large reduction in our average debt.
Dividends from Sanofi amounted to 295.6 million euros, an increase of +4.2%.
Income tax excluding non-recurring items amounted to 977.6 million euros, representing a rate of 27.4%, slightly below the 2010 rate.

Net profit excluding non-recurring items after non-controlling interests amounted to 2,582.9 million euros, up by 8.9%.

Net earnings per share, at €4.32, increased by 7.8%.

After allowing for non-recurring items, representing in 2011 a charge, net of tax, of 144 million euros, net profit amounted to 2,438.4 million euros, an increase of 8.9%.

5) Cash flow Statement, Balance sheet and Debt

Gross cash flow amounted to 3,226.2 million euros.

The working capital requirement increased by 322.0 million euros, after two years of decline in absolute value. This represents a return to a situation more in line with the group's activity.

Capital expenditure, at 865.7 million euros, amounted to 4.3% of sales.

After dividend payment and acquisitions (Q-MED and Clarisonic), the group recorded at December 31, 2011, a net cash surplus of 504 million euros.

The balance sheet structure is very solid, as at end-2011 shareholders' equity represented 65.7% of total assets. The reinforcement of shareholders' equity compared with end-2010 is mainly the result of profit allocated to reserves and the net increase in value of the Sanofi shares, valued at market price.

6) Proposed dividend at the Annual General Meeting of April 17, 2012

The Board of Directors has decided to propose that the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders of April 17, 2012 should approve a dividend of 2 euros per share, an increase of +11% compared with the dividend paid in 2011. This dividend will be paid on May 3, 2012 (ex-dividend date April 27, 2012 at 0:00 a.m., Paris time).
2012 is the first year in which shareholders who have continually held their shares in registered form for over 2 years will receive a loyalty bonus of +10%.

7) Share capital

The Board of Directors has set the amount of the share capital at December 31, 2011 to 602,984,082 shares with a par value of 0.20 euro, representing a total of 120,596,816.40 euros.

“This news release does not constitute an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy L’Oréal shares. If you wish to obtain more comprehensive information about L’Oréal, please refer to the public documents registered in France with the Autorité des Marchés Financiers, also available in English on our Internet site
This news release may contain some forward-looking statements. Athough the Company considers that these statements are based on reasonable hypotheses at the date of publication of this release, they are by their nature subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated or projected in these statements.”

Contacts at L'ORÉAL

Individual shareholders and market authorities
Mr Jean Régis CAROF
Tel.: +33 1 47 56 83 02

Financial analysts and institutional investors
Mrs Françoise LAUVIN
Tel.: +33 1 47 56 86 82
Tel.: +33 1 47 56 76 71

Tel.: +33 1 47 56 70 00

For more information, please contact your bank, broker or financial institution (I.S.I.N. code: FR0000120321), and consult your usual newspapers, and the Internet site for shareholders and investors,, or its mobile version on your cell phone,; alternatively, call +33 1 40 14 80 50.

D - Appendices

Appendix 1: L'Oréal group sales 2010/2011 (€ millions)

First quarter:  
The Body Shop164170
First quarter total4,7225,160
Second quarter:  
The Body Shop170168
Second quarter total4,9454,989
First half:  
The Body Shop334337
First half total9,66710,150
Third quarter:  
The Body Shop172166
Third quarter total4,8524,938
Nine months:  
The Body Shop506503
Nine months total14,51815,087
Fourth quarter:  
The Body Shop249264
Fourth quarter total4,9775,256
Full year  
The Body Shop755768
Full year total19,49620,343

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