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Why Revlon’s Stock Dove 28% in May

By Demitri Kalogeropoulos – Jun 9, 2017 at 6:02PM

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Competition surged last quarter in the beauty-products industry, sending Revlon's sales and profitability lower.

What happened

Revlon (REV 1.43%) shares dropped 28% last month, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

REV Chart

REV data by YCharts.

The slump has contributed to a rough year for shareholders, as the beauty-product specialist has shed 33% so far in 2017 compared to an 8% increase for the broader market.

So what

Last month's decline was sparked by Revlon's announcement of its fiscal first-quarter earnings results. The numbers weren't encouraging. Organic sales fell 6% as a near 20% dive in the core U.S. geography was only partly offset by gains in international markets. Adjusted gross margin fell by more than 2 percentage points, as well, thanks to increased price cuts and a shift toward less profitable product sales.

A woman applies skin cream.

Image source: Getty Images.

Executives said they weren't happy with the mixed performance, but saw reason for optimism. "While we are disappointed with our U.S. results," CEO Fabian Garcia said in a press release, "our brands continue to achieve strong international net sales growth across all segments."

Now what

Revlon's plan to get back on track involves boosting its international presence, especially in attractive markets in Asia and Latin America. The Elizabeth Arden brand should also help raise profitability once the integration finishes over the next few quarters.

As for the critical U.S. segment, Revlon hopes to continue holding its market-share position with retailers, even as the entire sector suffers from brutal price cuts. That price war will likely pass as soon as inventory levels decline to match up better with the new pace of customer traffic.

Demitrios Kalogeropoulos has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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