Sally Beauty Holdings (SBH) has untangled itself from former parent Alberto-Culver. Formerly Sally Beauty Co., the firm is one of the US's largest retailers and distributors of professional beauty supplies. While the US accounts for most of its sales, the company also has stores in Canada, Europe, and South America. Some 3,560 Sally Beauty Supply stores sell more than 8,000 hair, skin, and nail products. Sally Beauty also sells its products online. SBH's Beauty Systems Group (BSG) employs more than 980 sales consultants and operates more than 1,000 CosmoProf and Armstrong McCall stores that sell products only to salons and beauty professionals.
Texas-based Sally Beauty Holdings (SBH) rings up about 80% of its sales in the US. International markets, including Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Ireland, and the UK, account for the rest.
SBH operates through two business segments: Sally Beauty Supply (SBS), which accounts for more than 60% of sales, operates more than 4,830 stores, Most are company owned. SBS stores offer more than 8,000 products for hair, skin, and nails and carry brands such as Clairol, L'Oreal, Wella, and Conair, as well as an extensive selection of proprietary merchandise. Beauty Systems Group (BSG) contributes more than 35% of annual sales and operates stores under the CosmoPro and Armstrong McCall names. They carry as many as 9,800 professionally branded products, including Paul Mitchell, Sabastian, Joico, and Aquage, which are targeted exclusively for professional and salon use, and resale to salon customers.
Sales and Marketing
Through its company-owned and franchised locations, SBS stores target retail customers and salon professionals, while BSG exclusively targets salons and salon professionals at its 1,265 locations. The company relies on print ads, digital marketing, trade shows, and product education for salon professionals to promote its products. In fiscal 2014, the company reported advertising costs of $90.2 million, up from $83.9 million, and $79.8 million and $70.9 million in fiscal years 2013 and 2012, respectively.
The company has reported an upward revenue trend since fiscal 2009. In fiscal 2014 BHS reported a 4% rise in revenues driven by a 4% increase in both SBS and BSG revenues stemming from increases in unit volume (including higher sales at existing stores and incremental sales from 141 company-operated stores opened in the fiscal year) and higher prices (resulting from changes in product mix, including the impact on average unit prices of certain third-party brands introduced for SBS).
The company’s net income decreased by 6% in fiscal 2014 due to higher selling, general and administrative expenses together with an increase in depreciation and amortization, and interest expense. These were partially offset by higher sales and a lower provision for income taxes.
BHS' cash flow in operating activities peaked in fiscal 2014 with $316 million (up from $310.5 million in fiscal 2013) due to decreased inventory and other current assets and higher accounts receivable, partially offset by lower net income and increased depreciation and amortization expenses.
Hair color and hair care products account for 45% of the company's sales. The aging populations in Europe and the US are helping drive demand for SBH's hair color, hair loss prevention products, and other products and services designed to mask the signs of aging. The company also caters to African-American and Hispanic customers with a broad selection of ethic products, accounting for about 7% of total sales in Sally Beauty stores over the past three years. The beauty supply distributor believes that its focus on ethnic products gives it an advantage over the competition.
The business continues to grow organically in existing and new markets and through acquisitions. Since fiscal 2010, SBS and BSG have opened an aggregate of 611 and 174 net new stores, respectively. SBH intends to continue their annual organic store growth between 3% and 4% of their total stores for at least the next few years.
Store openings overseas are also key to SBH's growth plan, with more stores planned for Europe, and Central and South America.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In 2014 the company acquired Arctic Beauty, Inc., an Alaska-based professional-only distributor of beauty products, for $4.9 million
In 2013 SBH acquired Essential Salon, a to-the-trade distributor of beauty products operating in the Northeast, for about $16 million.
In 2012 the company purchased the Netherlands-based beauty-supply sellers Kappersservice Floral B.V., Hair Zone B.V., and Exphair B.V. to further expand its reach into Europe.
SBH was founded in New Orleans in 1964.