P&L

Germany’s Henkel has a global toilet laboratory, and it’s been a good investment

Dusseldorf-based Henkel’s laundry and home care business outperformed during the third quarter.
Dusseldorf-based Henkel’s laundry and home care business outperformed during the third quarter.
Image: Reuters/Ina Fassbender
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The numbers: Pretty good. While sales slipped 2.6% due largely to currency effects, the German consumer products giant said its adjusted measure of organic sales growth was up 4.2%. Operating earnings—excluding one-time events and restructuring costs—were up 6.5%, beating analyst expectations.

The takeaway: The company is doing well in emerging markets. The company’s laundry and home care division saw double-digit sales growth in emerging markets, which was responsible for driving a 5.5% increase in organic sales for laundry and home care overall. The division sells items such as Persil and Purex laundry detergents and Bref and WC Frisch toilet cleansers.

What’s interesting: Deep in the bowels of Henkel’s Dusseldorf headquarters is the company’s toilet-cleaner proving ground. “We also have a basement with approximately 50 different toilets because toilets look different in the entire world, and we want to make certain that we develop the right products to clean toilets,” Henkel CEO Kasper Rosted told Bloomberg TV back in August. It must be a sight to behold.