For the full year 2016, worldwide net sales decreased 5% to $15.2 billion. Global unit volume decreased 3.0%, pricing increased 2.5% and foreign exchange was negative 4.5%. Excluding divested businesses and the impact of the deconsolidation of the company’s Venezuelan operations, unit volume increased 1.5%. Organic sales grew 4%.
Ian Cook chairman, president and chief executive officer, commented on the fourth quarter results. “In the face of continued challenging macroeconomic conditions worldwide, foreign currency headwinds accelerating versus expectations, slowing category growth in several key markets and India’s demonetization, we achieved another quarter of organic sales growth,” he said. “While net sales declined 4.5%, worldwide organic sales grew 1.5% led by emerging markets where organic sales grew 4.5%.
Colgate’s leadership of the global toothpaste market continued during the quarter with its global market share reaching 44.0%. Global leadership in manual toothbrushes also continued with Colgate’s global market share in that category rising to 33.1%.
“Pleasingly, gross profit margin, operating profit margin and net income as a percent to sales all increased versus the year ago period,” observed Cook. “As we look ahead, uncertainty in global markets and foreign exchange volatility remain challenging, which sees us redoubling our focus on profitable growth. While based on current spot rates, we expect a low-single-digit net sales increase for 2017, we anticipate another year of solid organic sales growth driven by a full new product pipeline, engaging marketing programs and strong advertising support.”