France-based BIC Group, the parent company of Top 40 supplier BIC Graphic (asi/40480), has announced net sales growth of 5.8% for the second quarter of 2015, and 6.3% growth for the first half of the year. BIC Graphic, the company’s promotional products division, reported its Q2 revenues reached $78.2 million, a year-over-year increase of 1.8%. For the first half of 2015, the supplier firm generated a 2.1% rise in revenues, with sales of $145.1 million. All sales growth represents gains at constant currencies and excludes the effects of acquisitions.
“Our H1 2015 results were particularly strong as a result of stationery sell-in for Europe’s back to school and solid sales growth in lighter and shaver,” said Mario Guevara, CEO of BIC Group, in a statement. “In light of the six-month performance, we are very confident to achieve our full-year net sales growth of 4%-5% on a comparative basis.”
According to its published release, BIC Graphic’s sales were “driven by an overall good performance in key European countries such as the UK, Spain and Germany.” While revenues in developing markets “continued to grow,” the company reported BIC Graphic’s sales in North America “were flat” in the first half.
BIC Graphic’s H1 normalized IFO margin was -4.7% versus -4.2% during the same period in 2014, “due to continued reinvestments in the business for the long-term.” Q2 BIC Graphic normalized IFO margin was -3.0% compared to -1.6% a year earlier. The company said, though, in its quarterly filing that BIC Graphic’s overall numbers “confirmed positive momentum” carried over from 2014 and Q1 of this year.
On its Top 40 list, Counselor ranks BIC Graphic as the fourth-largest supplier in the industry after the firm reported 2014 North American ad specialty sales of $323 million, a year-over-year increase of 3.2%.