Nature’s Sunshine Products, the Lehi-Utah-based health and wellness company, reported its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2017. Net sales of $83.1 million increased 0.8 percent compared to $82.4 million in the first quarter of 2016.
On a local currency basis, net sales increased 0.4 percent as compared to the first quarter of 2016. NSP Russia, Central and Eastern Europe delivered 19.8 percent growth (20.2 percent in local currency) in net sales as compared to the first quarter of 2016. The quarter included net sales of $2.7 million related to China pre-opening product sales through Hong Kong. Net sales were positively impacted by $0.4 million of favorable foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations, offset by a $2.9 million decline in local currency net sales in the Synergy Worldwide segment.
“First quarter revenue was up modestly year-over-year, as resurgent growth in NSP Russia, Central and Eastern Europe helped to offset unanticipated weakness in Synergy Asia driven by economy-related challenges in South Korea,” said Gregory L. Probert, Nature’s Sunshine Chairman and CEO. “The pre-tax earnings decline versus the prior year reflects the continued costs associated with infrastructure built in anticipation of a potential market opportunity in China that remains dependent upon completion of the regulatory process. As we progress through 2017, beginning in the second quarter we are actively implementing the Oracle ERP Program. The implementation may cause near-term disruptions to operations and may negatively impact revenues and profitability in future periods. We continue to closely manage our investments in China, as we remain strategically focused on the long-term.”
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Nature’s Sunshine was No. 50 on last’s month’s DSN Global 100 ranking of the top direct selling companies in the world. The company reported earnings of $341 million for 2016.
Slight Decrease in Net Sales for Reliv
At Chesterfield, Missouri-based Reliv International, Inc., net sales were slightly down. The company reported net sales of $12.8 million for the first quarter of 2017 compared with net sales of $13.0 million in the first quarter of 2016.
Net sales in the United States remained level at $10.3 million in the first quarter of 2017 when compared to the prior-year quarter. Net sales in Reliv’s foreign markets decreased 9.5 percent in the first quarter of 2017 compared with the prior-year first quarter with 8.0 percent of the decline due to the impact of foreign currency fluctuation as the result of a stronger U.S. dollar. An increase of 39.1 percent in net sales in Asia in the first quarter of 2017 was offset by a decline of 22.8 percent in net sales in Europe, along with decreases in other regions. The impact of foreign currency fluctuation was 12.0 percent of the net sales decline in Europe in the first quarter of 2017.
As of March 31, 2017, Reliv had 37,280 distributors and preferred customers, a decrease of 17.2 percent from March 31, 2016, of which 3,590 are Master Affiliate level and above. The number of Master Affiliates decreased by 32.3 percent compared to the year-ago total. Master Affiliate is the level at which distributors are eligible to earn generation royalties. The decrease in the number of Master Affiliates in the U.S. and Canada was due in part to the increase in the business volume requirement for distributors to reach the Master Affiliate level. This change was effective February 1, 2016 as part of the company’s revised compensation plan strategy and affected Master Affiliate re-qualifications during the first quarter of 2017.
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