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Reckitt reports personal-care growth

This article was originally published in The Rose Sheet

Executive Summary

UK-based Reckitt Benckiser says contribution of Mucinex expectorants helped drive 13% growth in its health and personal-care unit in the fourth quarter, to £567 mil. ($885.6 mil.). Division's net sales totaled $3.25 bil. for full fiscal 2009, a 14% gain, Reckitt reports. Initial sales of Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System, which automatically dispenses antibacterial soap upon sensing the user's hand, were "very encouraging," CEO Bart Becht said during same-day analyst call. Firm plans to launch a line of Clearasil Overnight products in the first half of 2010 in multiple markets. Reckitt Benckiser booked overall revenue of $3.22 bil. in Q4, a 10% increase, and $12.11 bil. for the full year, up 8%. Adjusted earnings jumped 14% to $699.8 mil. for the quarter, and rose 13% to $2.21 bil. for the year

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