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Ulta Beauty profit beats on demand for high-margin cosmetics; shares rise 11%

Ulta Beauty beat quarterly profit estimates on Thursday, driven by sales of higher-margin cosmetics products, sending the retailer’s shares up over 11% in extended trading.

The near 30-year-old company has capitalized on booming demand for celebrity-led beauty brands, which are usually priced at a premium, and has attributed cosmetics lines from Kylie Jenner and YouTuber James Charles for driving customers to its stores.

In October, Ulta said it had secured exclusive rights to sell singer Jennifer Lopez’s new fragrance, PROMISE, in the United States.

Kylie Jenner visits Houston Ulta Beauty to promote the exclusive launch of Kylie Cosmetics with the beauty retailer, on November 18, 2018 in Houston, Texas.

Rick Kern | Getty Images

The company’s net income fell to $129.75 million in the third quarter ended Nov. 2 from $131.17 million a year earlier.

On a per-share basis, the company earned $2.25 per share, beating analysts’ estimates of $2.13 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Ulta said the number of transactions at its stores rose 2.3% in the reported quarter, helping it match same-store sales growth estimates of 3.2%.

It also narrowed its full-year earnings outlook to a range of $11.93 to $12.03 per share from its previous forecast of $11.86 to $12.06 per share.

Ulta’s shares were trading 11.4% higher at $259.03 in extended trading. Ulta and Netflix are the top-performing S&P 500 components since the start of the bull market in 2009.

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