China sales drive up profits at Japan's Shiseido

TOKYO, Oct 25, 2007 (AFP) - Brisk overseas sales, particularly in China, drove net profit up sharply at Japan's top cosmetics maker Shiseido Co. in the six months to September, the company said Thursday, October 25th.

The company raised its full-year profit target slightly in light of the strong interim performance.

Shiseido the Makeup 2007 campaign

Net profit increased 37.9 percent to 12.94 billion yen (113.5 million dollars) in the first half of the financial year, Shiseido said in a statement.

Operating earnings grew by 24.2 percent to 32.07 billion yen on revenue of 362.87 billion yen, up 4.5 percent.

"Although domestic sales declined slightly, overseas sales grew considerably, driven by the Chinese market," the statement said.

China has become a key market for Shiseido, which is suffering from lacklustre sales in Japan where the population is both ageing and shrinking.

The company now expects net profit to rise 34.4 percent to 34 billion yen in the year to next March, up from a previous target of 33 billion yen.

Revenue is forecast to increase 5.1 percent to 730 billion yen and operating profit by 20 percent to 60 billion yen.

The cosmetics maker said it would "continue making proactive marketing expenditures in overseas markets earmarked for high growth, centering on China."

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