Herbal health supplement maker Nature’s Sunshine Products (NATR—NASDAQ) saw its overall sales drop by 1.8 percent to $82.4 million in the first three months of 2016, down from $83.8 million a year ago.
Revenue grew for the seventh consecutive quarter for NSP United States and NSP Canada, generating a 0.3 percent jump to $38.3 million for NSP North America overall. The Utah company said net revenue was negatively impacted by $2.5 million of unfavorable exchange rate fluctuations and a $1.1 million decline in net sales in the NSP Russia, Central and Eastern Europe segment.
Net income was $1.8 million or 11 cents a diluted share, down from $4.2 million or 23 cents a diluted share in the first quarter of 2015. Earnings per diluted share were negatively impacted by the company’s investment in China of 7 cents a share, and unfavorable changes in the effective tax rate of 2 cents a share.
The number of Nature’s Sunshine distributors and customers dropped by 4 percent to 253,400 in the first quarter, while the number of managers grew by 8.6 percent to 13,800. Despite the declines, Gregory Probert, Chairman and CEO, says he is pleased because the numbers “reflect the progress we have made toward returning Nature’s Sunshine to sustainable, long-term growth.”
Subsidiary Synergy WorldWide reported its best first quarter ever, with revenue jumping 3.8 percent to $29.8 million. Probert says the growth was driven by process improvements taking hold in Korea, Japan, Indonesia and Thailand.
Probert also noted that Nature’s Sunshine Products continues to make good progress in China and is on-track to receive its direct selling license in the third quarter of 2016.