Personal care appliance maker Helen of Troy Limited reported that sales for the first quarter ended May 31, 2005 increased 19 percent to U.S. $127.4 million versus sales of $107.0 million in the same period of the prior year.
First-quarter net earnings were $10.5 million, or $0.33 per diluted share, compared with $14.5 million, or $0.44 per diluted share, for the same period a year earlier, a decline of 27 percent.
Gross profit for the quarter was 46.1 percent of sales compared with 46.9 percent of sales in the first quarter of 2004. Increases in selling, general and administrative expenses during the quarter were the primary reasons for the net earnings decline for the first quarter.
According to the company, personal care sales for the first quarter decreased approximately 6 percent, excluding the sales of the newly acquired OXO International business.
"While this is an improvement over our fourth quarter fiscal year 2005 decline in personal care sales of 11 percent, we were disappointed that the improvement in our personal care sales from last year's fourth quarter was not as large as we had expected," Gerald J. Rubin, chairman, CEO, and president, said. "Our sales leaders during the first quarter were OXO International products, the domestic Idelle Labs skin care products, and Latin American sales of hair care appliance products."
The company said it is reiterating its fiscal year sales and net earnings guidance provided last quarter, with sales in the range of $615 million to $640 million, and net earnings in the range of $2.50 to $ 2.60 per diluted share.
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