Core growth at Newell’s Writing and Commercial businesses

Writing and Commercial were two of Newell’s three business units that returned to core growth in the first quarter of 2024.

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Writing and Commercial were two of Newell’s three business units that returned to core growth in the first quarter of 2024.

Following steep top-line declines at Newell in the past few quarters, total company sales in the first three months of 2024 were $1.65 billion. This was a reported decrease of 8.4%, adjusted to -4.7% on a core basis – an improvement on the 9.3% core decline in the final quarter of last year.

Writing revenue for the first quarter was $324 million and Commercial generated sales of $324 million. While both of these figures represented reported declines of $8 million and $24 million, respectively, Newell said both units grew organically.

During the Q1 earnings conference call, Newell CEO Chris Peterson spent some time describing innovations in the Writing category such as new markers from Sharpie and Paper Mate’s Inkjoy gel pens. The Sharpie launch represents the brand’s entry into the creative segment.

Peterson said Newell had backed both launches with significant marketing support, including a campaign called Let’s Great Creative. He is expecting market share gains this year, including during the back-to-school season, even though the overall market is predicted to be flat.

There were positive signs from the bottom line too as Newell implements a major restructuring programme. Adjusted operating profit for Q1 was $76 million compared with $43 million 12 months ago.

For the full year, Newell is forecasting a core sales decline of 3-6%.

Atlanta (GA), USA