Estee Lauder on Wednesday cut its annual profit forecast and said it expects a drop in annual sales, as the MAC lipstick maker struggles with a slower-than-anticipated recovery in its Asia travel retail business. Shares of the New York-based company were down about 15% in premarket trading.
Major global companies including European peer L’Oreal have flagged ongoing challenges to their travel retail businesses in Asia, particularly China, as the world’s second-largest economy struggles to revive domestic demand post-pandemic.
Last quarter, Estee had said the recovery in Asia travel retail – sales made at airports or travel destinations like Korea and China’s Hainan – has been under pressure with retail sales trends turning negative in May and June.
Estee makes about 36% of its annual revenue from the Asia Pacific region.
The company now expects full-year 2024 adjusted profit per share between $2.17 and $2.42, compared with its prior forecast of $3.50 to $3.75.
Estee now expects full-year 2024 sales to decrease 2% to an increase of 1%, compared with the previous forecast of an increase between 5% and 7%.