Top Companies Report

14. Church & Dwight

July 10, 2013

Ewing, NJ

Sales: $2.3 billion for household, personal care and oral care products. Corporate sales: $2.9 billion. Net income: $350 million.

Key Personnel: James R. Craigie, chairman and chief executive officer.

Major Products: Arm & Hammer and Xtra laundry detergent; OxiClean, Scrub Free, Kaboom and Orange Glo household cleaners; Nair depilatories; Oragel oral analgesics; Closeup and Aim toothpastes.

New Products: Arm & Hammer Crystal Burst unit dose detergent, Xtra Sensitive and Xtra Warm Vanilla Comfort detergents, Arm & Hammer Ultra Power detergent, Nair Spa Clay Total Care Trio, OxiClean Dishwashing Booster, Trojan lubricants, Arm & Hammer Tooth Tunes toothbrushes.

Comments: Corporate sales rose 7% last year, which the company attributed, in part, to higher sales of Arm & Hammer liquid laundry detergent, Xtra liquid laundry detergent, Oxiclean laundry additives and the new A&H Crystal Burst unit does laundry detergent. These gains were partially offset by lower sales of A&H powder detergent, Spinbrush toothbrushes and Arrid deodorant. Organic sales growth rose 5%.

CEO Jim Craigie is never shy about promoting Church & Dwight’s performance since he took over in 2004. During those nine years, the company’s total shareholder return of 145% easily outdistanced No. 2 Colgate. He credits C&D’s strong results to several factors, including:
  • Recession-resistant product portfolio;
  • A balanced portfolio of 60% premium and 40% value products;
  • Power brands (8 brands Arm & Hammer, OxiClean, Trojan, Spinbrush, Xtra, Orajel, Nair and First Response account for more than 80% of sales);
  • Ferociously defending its brands;
  • Driving international growth (international accounted for 18% of sales in 2012, up from 2% in 2001);
  • Expanding gross margin (from 29.1% in 2001 to 44.2% in 2012);
  • Strong acquisitions (seven of the eight power brands were acquired since 2000);
  • Free cash flow management;
  • Superior overhead management (at $671,000 per employee, C&D has the highest revenue per employee than any major CPG company);
  • Expert management; and
  • Attention to total shareholder return.
Craigie is taking C&D’s power brands into new areas including manual toothbrushes (an $800 million category); cold sores ($200 million), dishwashing additives ($140 million) and sexual lubricants ($250 million). For the first quarter of 2013, sales rose nearly 13% to nearly $780 million.

In May, the company dedicated its new worldwide headquarters in Ewing, NJ. The facility has capacity for more than 550 employees. It occupies 250,000-square-feet and features two connecting 125,000-square-foot, energy-efficient office buildings separated by an atrium. The new headquarters centralizes employees previously housed in four separate buildings. All corporate departments of Church & Dwight are based at the new facility, including the executive offices, sales, marketing, Operations, finance, accounting, IT, law and HR. The R&D team and  Specialty Products Division remains in the former headquarters building in Princeton. 
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