Body Shop bounces up 38pc

LONDON: Body Shop International, the British cosmetics retailer with an environmentally-conscious stance, yesterday said it boosted 1993/94 profits by 38 per cent and was optimistic for the current year.

The group made pre-tax profit of GBP29.7 million (about HK$228.69 million) for the year ended February 28, up from a previous GBP21.5 million. Sales rose GBP27.1 million to GBP195.4 million.

Chairman Gordon Roddick said the group turned round a 1992/93 fall in same-store sales, which strips out the effect of new store openings, to stand level in the year just reported. The progress continued into the current year, with sales on a positive trend.

''In the UK we have moved into positive growth, probably about three or four per cent in the first eight weeks,'' Mr Roddick said. ''The USA is also positive.'' Body Shop has developed a successful niche market with its fruit and natural product range, including watermelon-scented sun care products, tangerine beer shampoo and peppermint foot cream.

The company champions many social and environmental causes.