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Digital social selling and e-commerce drive sales growth; Avon synergies ahead of plan and significant deleveraging in the quarter; Natura &Co becomes the world's biggest B-Corp
SÃO PAULO, March 4, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Natura &Co (B3 – NTCO3; NYSE – NTCO) recorded another quarter of revenue and profit growth in the fourth quarter, again significantly outperforming the global Cosmetics, Fragrance, and Toiletries market, driven by a continued ramp-up in digital sales across all brands that helped offset the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Consolidated net revenue in Q4 stood at R$12 billion, up 24.3% in Brazilian Reais and 6.4% at constant currency, driven by sales growth in BRL by all four of the Group's iconic brands. Adjusted EBITDA was up by 12.3% to R$1.5 billion, with margin of 12.4%. Net income rose 200.7% to R$177.4 million.
Natura &Co's strong Q4 performance was powered by further growth in digital social selling and e-commerce, with total group digital sales up 79% and all brands recording their highest-ever e-commerce sales. Aesop's total online sales grew 190% in the quarter and reached almost 30% of its revenue, doubling over the previous year, and The Body Shop rapidly pivoted to online and At-Home channels, which combined grew more than 130%, representing 40% of total sales. Social selling continues to grow, with e-brochure revenue up nearly 90% vs. Q4-19 at Avon globally. At Natura in Latin America, the number of consultants sharing content grew by more than 300% since Q1 and the number of orders through the 1 million+ consultant online stores in the region increased by 60% vs. Q4-19.
After unveiling its 2030 sustainability vision, Commitment to Life, Natura &Co reached a new milestone by becoming a B-Corp, becoming the world's biggest certified company. It also achieved important targets in sustainability in 2020. The Natura brand avoided 32% in emissions, which is equivalent to 162,000 tons of CO₂ emissions of greenhouse gas and all four brands launched their plans to become Net Zero by 2030 on Scopes 1, 2 and 3. Natura &Co invested nearly R$500 million in 2020 in key causes (such as fighting COVID-19, support to women, sourcing and benefit sharing with communities, among others). Finally, Natura &Co replaced 2,489 tons of virgin plastic for recycled alternatives, equivalent to more than 120 million PET bottles.
A key highlight of the quarter was the strengthening of Natura &Co's capital structure with the successful completion in October of a US$1 billion capital raise. This allowed the Group to significantly deleverage its balance sheet, and it ends 2020 with a net debt to EBITDA ratio of 0.97 times.
Natura &Co also made further advances in its integration of Avon, one year after it became part of the Group's family of brands. Avon's transformation and brand rejuvenation continues, with a new commercial model being rolled out. Synergies from the Avon integration reached US$25.5 million in Q4 and stood at US$73.3 million in the full year, ahead of our estimates.
Roberto Marques, Executive Chairman and Group CEO of Natura &Co, declared: "In a year of unprecedented challenges, Natura &Co associates and our network across all of our businesses showed care and adaptability in the face of a global pandemic, demonstrating both our purpose-driven approach to business and the strength of our omnichannel, multi-brand model. Our performance in the fourth quarter attests to that, with strong growth in sales and profits. By pivoting rapidly to digital social selling and e-commerce when stores were closed by lockdowns, we were able to outperform the CFT market both globally and in Brazil."
Natura &Co Latam's net revenue increased by 20.5% in BRL in Q4. The Natura brand's net revenue rose by 24.7% in BRL, with strong growth both in Brazil (+16.2%), and Hispanic Latam (+44.5%). The Avon brand's net revenue increased by 16.2% in BRL, with growth in Brazil for the second consecutive quarter (+4.9% in BRL), driven by higher activity and productivity, and a resumption of growth in Hispanic Latam (+23% in BRL). Adjusted EBITDA for Natura &Co Latam was R$774.1 million, up 33.6%, and adjusted EBITDA margin was 12.2% (+120 bps).
Avon International, posted Q4 net revenue growth of 12.1% in BRL, with a particularly strong performance in the UK, where it recorded sales growth of 3% in constant currency and gained market share for the third consecutive quarter. Adjusted EBITDA was R$118.9 million, with 4.1% margin (-560 bps), reflecting investments in brand, digital and commercial areas to accelerate future growth.
The Body Shop posted another strong quarter, with net revenue increasing 48.4% in BRL. Consumers continued to shift to e-commerce and At-Home (direct sales), with growth of 72% and 206% at constant currency, respectively, significantly offsetting the impact of store closures due to the pandemic, notably in Europe. Adjusted EBITDA in Q4 was R$492.8 million, with adjusted margin of 23.7% (-290 bps).
Aesop posted another stellar performance in Q4, with strong double-digit growth in both sales and profitability in Reais. Net sales grew 62.1% in Q4, with a remarkable performance in Asia and a 190% increase in digital sales. EBITDA rose 66.1% to R$271.6 million, with margin up 90 basis points to 37.1%.
About Natura &Co
Natura &Co is a global, purpose-driven, multi-channel and multi-brand cosmetics group which includes Avon, Natura, The Body Shop and Aesop. Natura &Co posted net revenues of R$ 36.9 billion in 2020. The four companies that form the group are committed to generating positive economic, social and environmental impact. For 130 years Avon has stood for women: providing innovative, quality beauty products which are primarily sold to women, through women. Founded in 1969, Natura is a Brazilian multinational in the cosmetics and personal care segment, leader in direct sales. Founded in 1976 in Brighton, England, by Anita Roddick, The Body Shop is a global beauty brand that seeks to make a positive difference in the world. The Australian beauty brand Aesop was established in 1987 with a quest to create a range of superlative products for skin, hair and the body.
SOURCE Natura &Co