Natural Health Trends Anticipates 83% Revenue Growth in Q1

In a preview of its quarterly results, Natural Health Trends Corp. (NHTC—NASDAQ) on Tuesday said it expects revenue in the neighborhood of $74.3 million.

The preliminary estimate represents an 83 percent increase over the first quarter of 2015, when Natural Health Trends reported revenue of $40.7 million. The Dallas-based company also forecasts deferred revenue of $6.5 million as of March 31, down from $10.4 million at March 31, 2015.

Launched in 1988, Natural Health Trends has developed an extensive range of household and personal-care products under the NHT Global brand. Last year, revenue climbed 113 percent to $265 million, placing the company at No. 60 on the DSN Global 100 and No. 2 on Fortune’s Fastest-Growing Companies list.

Investors responded favorably to the company’s earnings preview, sending the stock up 6.7 percent to $37.30 in Wednesday trading. Natural Health Trends is slated to release quarterly financial results on Wednesday, April 27.


The Social Age

by Andrea Tortora

Click here to order the January 2016 issue in which this article appeared or click here to download it to your mobile device.

The Social Age is here. If you’re not taking full advantage of the tools and technologies that social platforms have to offer, you and your company are likely to be left behind as the competition leaps ahead. Now well into its infancy, the Social Age is and will be making a tremendous impact on the sales industry, especially within the world of direct selling. The changes already cannot be ignored.

Technology drives everything—recruitment, retention and revenue—for most companies. Those businesses that realize what they can achieve when all of their internal, back office, social media, field tools and software systems work together are equipped to innovate and leverage essential data that will let them thrive in the future.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram are potent tools that companies and consultants are learning to use as they build connections with customers and grow sales. Other apps such as Periscope and Google Hangout are gaining traction, too. Yet many executives and companies are slow to embrace these advances. A study from and Domo finds that 68 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs have no social media presence. Among the 30 percent who do, they only use one social channel. Here LinkedIn was the chosen platform.

In contrast to that study, it does appear that C-level executives within direct selling are more plugged in to the benefits of these engagement tools. A recent study conducted among members by the U.S. Direct Selling Association (DSA), titled The 2015 Managing Your Company’s Web Presence and Technology Systems Survey, indicates that nearly six in 10 companies surveyed report that one or more of their chief-level executives have company-associated social media accounts that they actively engage in
(57 percent).

Additionally, over half of those also indicate that the chief executives create the content for those accounts. At Scentsy, the Idaho-based wickless candle company, it’s common for an executive to personally respond to field achievements or post in conversations on Facebook, the social media platform most used by Scentsy Consultants.

Rick Stambaugh, Chief Information Officer at Utah-based company USANA, refers to the focus of today as “Digital Humanism.” He says, “The consumer-driven Internet of things has many components, but the most prominent one is social.”

As direct sellers work toward more fully embracing the Social Age and everything that comes with it, a few things are clear…

Click here to read the full article in Direct Selling News.

USANA Boosts Earnings Outlook on Strong Q3 Results

USANA Health Sciences (USNA—NYSE) on Tuesday reported its fourth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth in sales, earnings and customer acquisition.

The health firm posted net income of $25.6 million in the third quarter, up 31 percent from $19.5 million a year ago. Diluted earnings were $1.92 per share, coming in 16 cents higher than the average estimate from analysts. The Utah-based company closed out the quarter with zero debt and $174 million in cash.

Revenue for the quarter rose 21.5 percent to $233.3 million, despite an $18.3 million hit from currency rates. Constant currency revenue increased 31.1 percent. The Asia Pacific region accounted for 72 percent of total sales, with 29 percent growth in the quarter. The Americas and Europe reported a 5.5 percent uptick in revenue. Globally, the company’s network of active sellers grew by 39 percent.

“While currency fluctuations negatively impacted our reported results, we generated strong local currency sales growth in nearly all of our markets,” Co-CEO Dave Wentz said in the company’s release. “Our results continue to be driven by our strategies for customer growth, which is our highest priority as we seek to improve the overall health and nutrition of our customers around the world.”

For the full year, management said it expects revenue of $915 million to $920 million, narrowing its previous guidance of $900 million to $920 million. The company expects earnings in the range of $7.25 to $7.35 per share, versus earlier guidance of $6.90 to $7.20 per share.

Immunotec Reports Continued Growth in U.S. Sales

Growing U.S. sales sustained third-quarter momentum at Immunotec (IMM—TSX), the nutrition company said in an earnings report released Thursday.

Quebec-based Immunotec posted a 31 percent increase in U.S. sales for the quarter ended July 31, primarily due to a 37 percent jump in new U.S. consultants and customers. By contrast, sponsoring activities in Mexico fell 20.6 percent from a year ago, where the market continues to adjust to a 16 percent value-added tax introduced by Immunotec in October 2014.

Quarterly revenue totaled $16.8 million, comparable to $16.9 million a year ago. In the first three quarters of the year, cumulative revenue increased 4.3 percent versus the same period in 2014.

Adjusted EBITDA also remained flat at $1.1 million, the publicly traded company reported. Net profit was $910,505, compared to a loss of $3.3 million a year ago.

Tupperware Tops Quarterly Estimates with $62M Profit

Tupperware Brands Corp. (TUP—NYSE) said Wednesday that second-quarter profit had exceeded expectations, despite revenue figures that dipped below Wall Street estimates.

Net income for the second quarter was $62 million, up 30 percent from a year ago. On a per-share basis, the Orlando, Florida-based company reported a profit of $1.23, versus 93 cents in the prior year. On average, analysts had forecasted earnings of $1.17 per share. Adjusted earnings were $1.21, down 18 percent in dollars but up 13 percent in local currency.

Quarterly revenue totaled $588.9 million, coming in just under the $589.8 million estimated by analysts. Emerging markets accounted for 67 percent of sales, with strong performances from Brazil, China, the Middle East and North Africa.

The kitchenware and cosmetics seller said its salesforce increased 3 percent versus a year ago to 3 million. In the U.S. and Canada, Tupperware recorded a 14 percent increase in new consultants.

For the current quarter, the company forecasts earnings of 69 cents to 74 cents per share. Full-year earnings expectations are in the range of $4.42 to $4.52 per share.

CVSL Issues First-Quarter Results, Misses Estimates

Dallas-based CVSL Inc. (NYSE MKT—CVSL) posted a net earnings loss in the first quarter amid efforts to revive the Longaberger business and execute an ongoing acquisition strategy.

CVSL completed the acquisition of health and household brand Kleeneze, one of the U.K.’s oldest and most prominent direct selling companies, at the end of the quarter. Taken into account, Kleeneze’s first-quarter performance significantly boosted top-line growth.

Combined quarterly revenue for Kleeneze and CVSL rose 20 percent to $32.0 million in the first three months of 2015. Reported revenue fell 27.9 percent across CVSL’s other business units.

On a pro forma basis, the direct selling group posted a net loss of $5.2 million, or 17 cents a share. On average, analysts had expected a loss of 7 cents a share. Gross margin increased to 60.6 percent from 51.3 a year ago.

The biggest factor in CVSL’s results was an ongoing turnaround at The Longaberger Co., said CVSL Vice Chairman and CFO John Rochon Jr., who took on leadership of the struggling household brand when CEO Tami Longaberger resigned earlier this month. “At Longaberger, we spent the first two years solving fundamental problems that we inherited. We had to focus on reducing bloated SG&A costs and paying off bank debt to bring Longaberger out of danger. Now, we’ve begun turning our attention to stabilizing the revenue line.”

The latest turnaround measures are aimed at reestablishing Longaberger as a premium brand by putting a halt to heavy discounting, reining in inventory and closing the brand’s outlet stores.

In the report, CVSL management also noted that Your Inspiration At Home, a maker of spices and other gourmet food items, is tracking to exceed $15.6 million in revenue this year. When CVSL acquired the Australian brand in May 2010, annual revenue was about $1.3 million.

Primerica Posts Quarterly Earnings Growth, Narrowly Misses Estimates

Primerica Inc. (PRI—NYSE) reported growth across all key metrics in its first earnings results under the leadership of new CEO Glenn Williams.

Revenue rose 6 percent to $345.1 million in the first quarter, the financial services provider said Wednesday. Net income was $43.2 million, or 82 cents a share, boosted by strong sales of Primerica’s term life product.

Operating income was 80 cents a share, missing analysts’ estimates by 1 cent, partly due to the timing of expense recognition for annual equity awards granted to retirement eligible employees. Earnings also took a minor hit from the unfavorable Canadian exchange rate, though Canada sales were up 8 percent in local currency.

Total policies issued rose 13 percent versus a year ago, driving 8 percent revenue growth in the term life category. Revenue from investment and savings products was up 7 percent to $129.1 million. The number of new representatives joining the company rose 10 percent over the prior-year period.

“Continued success in executing our organic growth strategy, coupled with our share repurchase program, position us well to continue delivering strong stockholder returns,” said Williams, who officially stepped into his new role at the beginning of April. The Atlanta-area company generated sales of $1.34 billion in 2014, earning the No. 14 rank on the DSN Global 100.

Herbalife Raises 2015 Forecast on Strength of Earnings Beat

Herbalife Ltd. set off a flurry of after-hours trading Tuesday evening as the Los Angeles nutrition company posted first-quarter earnings that easily beat expectations and boosted its profit forecast for the year.

Though revenue fell 12 percent to $1.1 billion, the report topped analysts’ estimates on the strength of higher sales in China. Sales in the market rose 21 percent, offsetting a 34 percent decrease in South and Central America and a 9 percent dip in North America.

Investors responded by driving the stock up 15 percent in after-hours trading to $46.21, its highest level of 2015. The stock had climbed to $48.38 by mid-day today.

In the first three months of 2015, net income rose 4.8 percent to $78.2 million, or 92 cents a share, from $74.6 million, or 74 cents. Adjusted EPS was $1.29, surpassing Herbalife’s own quarterly guidance of $1.00 to $1.10 a share and the Wall Street consensus estimate of $1.00 a share.

Analysts’ forecasts declined in the month leading up to Herbalife’s report, amid renewed accusations from activist investor Bill Ackman that the company employs deceptive marketing practices. Speaking to Bloomberg Television at the start of the week, the hedge fund manager, who has campaigned against Herbalife for two years since shorting the stock $1 billion, said he anticipated poor quarterly results and “continued deterioration of the business.”

Herbalife’s regulatory filing reflected April reports of an ongoing probe by the U.S. Department of Justice. In an earlier statement to CNBC, the supplement seller had acknowledged that it is cooperating in a “federal criminal investigation” into manipulation of Herbalife stock by Ackman.

In Herbalife’s earnings report, Chairman and CEO Michael Johnson pointed to the company’s sales leader retention—up in all markets with EMEA leading the way at 28 percent over a year ago—as a positive indicator of future sales growth.

For the full year, the company expects earnings will be as much as $4.60 a share, excluding some items. Herbalife previously told investors to expect maximum earnings of $4.50 a share.

via Herbalife Raises 2015 Forecast on Strength of Earnings Beat — Direct Selling News.

LifeVantage Names Darren Jensen as CEO

The search for LifeVantage’s new President and CEO has ended with the appointment of industry veteran Darren Jensen, effective May 18. Salt Lake City-based LifeVantage announced Wednesday that Jensen will succeed Douglas Robinson, who resigned in February after a four-year tenure with the company.

“The Board quickly recognized that Darren’s unparalleled track record of success with leading the development and execution of business expansion and sales growth strategies makes him the right leader for LifeVantage,” said Garry Mauro, Chairman of the Board of Directors for LifeVantage, calling Jensen a “respected visionary leader” within the industry.

Jensen’s 25 years of direct selling experience has included senior roles at several DSN Global 100 companies. He has led development and execution of global sales, product development and service expansion strategies, most recently as President of the Americas and Chief Sales Officer at a fast-growing personal-care and nutrition brand.

LifeVantage, the No. 34 direct selling company in North America with $214 million in 2014 revenue, reported lagging sales in its second quarter ended Dec. 31, 2014. Revenue dropped from $52 million in the prior year to $48 million, impacted by lower sales in Japan. Outside the Japanese market, revenue increased 1.6 percent compared to the second quarter of 2014. LifeVantage will report its third quarter results on May 6.

via LifeVantage Names Darren Jensen as CEO — Direct Selling News.

Youngevity Closes out 2014 with Record Revenue

Photo: Youngevity distributors kick off the year with an incentive cruise.

Youngevity International (OTCQX: YGYI) continued its double-digit growth streak in 2014 by more than doubling revenue, the company reported this week. The San Diego-area firm is setting its sights on international markets as it continues to expand its portfolio of nutrition and lifestyle products.

Youngevity reported 2014 revenue of $134.0 million, a 56.5 percent increase versus 2013. Revenue derived from acquisitions was $14.5 million. Net income increased to $5.4 million, up from $2.7 million in the prior year, largely due to a $4.7 million tax benefit from adjustments to deferred taxes.

“If I had to put a label on 2014, I would call it the year of refinement because we successfully refined nearly every key component of the company,” President Bill Andreoli told investors during the company’s earnings call. Throughout the year, Youngevity made improvements to its product warehousing and logistics system, website and online shopping experience, field training and recognition systems, and both its acquisition and organic growth strategies.

The company’s ongoing acquisition strategy has positioned it across the Health and Wellness, Beauty and Care, Food and Beverage, and Home and Family categories. This year Youngevity added energy services, including renewable energy options, through a partnership with Energy Professionals. In addition to its direct sales segment, Youngevity operates CLR Roasters, a vertically integrated gourmet coffee business.

Youngevity’s direct selling revenue grew 51 percent for the year, totaling $161.3 million, while the commercial coffee business grew 101 percent to $17.7 million. At year-end, total assets were $55.7 million, compared to $34.9 million at the close of 2013.

The company’s leadership says that in 2015 and beyond it will focus on establishing the brand across international markets, which accounted for just 8 percent of 2014 sales. Youngevity reports significant growth in Canada, its largest international market, as well as Australia and New Zealand, where it recently obtained a facility three times the size of the existing one to support demand in the region.

Recent expansions include Russia, where Youngevity has opened a Moscow office, and Singapore, where it hopes to build distribution within the Asian marketplace. Youngevity is also building a presence in Mexico with an eye toward additional Latin American countries.