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L'Oreal sales rise 1.8 per cent as developed markets hold up

PARIS – French cosmetics maker L’Oreal says its sales edged up 1.8 per cent in the first three months of the year to 6.55 billion euros ($7.41 billion) as gains in its main markets in Western Europe and North America offset a decline in Latin America.

Shifts in currency values weighed on the reported value of the sales. Not counting exchange rate changes, sales were up a much stronger 4.6 per cent.

Chairman and CEO Jean-Paul Agon said in a statement Monday that the company “made a solid start in the first quarter” and that online sales had grown by a strong 35 per cent.

Agon added he was confident that L’Oreal would perform better than the wider cosmetics market this year, and confirmed the company target to increase sales and profit.