Dieting boosts Naturade results

Related tags Nutrition

Naturade, a marketer of heart health and weight management
products, has announced a significant reduction in net losses for
2003. The popularity of low-carb diets and the demise of
ephedra-based products was responsible for the growth in sales of
Total Soy and Diet Lean brands, writes Claire Johnston.

Naturade's net loss for the year was reduced by $1.5 million to $0.4 million, up 78.8 per cent from the previous year. Net sales also grew for the company by 13.2 per cent to $16.3 million, compared to $14.4 million a year earlier.

By repositioning its soy protein brands - as alternatives to ephedra and as 'low-carb' products - Naturade was able to reduce its overheads and promotional expenditures as well as open up its products to new markets.

"Raging obesity in the US has increased consumer focus on weight loss and dominates today's health news. The demise of ephedra-based products is driving retailers and consumers to search for weight loss brands such as Naturade Total Soy and Diet Lean that are safe and effective,"​ said Naturade CEO Bill Stewart.

The introduction of Diet Lean Carb Blocker in the fourth quarter of 2003 provided Naturade with a platform to capitalize on consumer interest in low carb diets, an industry thought to reach $30 billion by the end of 2004.

"We're teaming up with major brands such as Tonalin and Phase 2 to attack the weight-loss market with products that have been proven to work in hundreds of scientific studies over the last 20 years,"​ said Stewart.

Fourth quarter sales for Naturade increased 16.5 per cent - to $4.6 million - compared to the previous year, with health food channel revenues increasing 2.9 per cent. This turnaround in profit was attributed to the company's reduction in operating costs and the launch of the Diet Lean brand.

"We continue to focus on Naturade's core health food store business while gaining ground with our strategic initiative in the mass market. Mass market net sales grew 24.1 per cent in 2003 and now represent 53.6 per cent of total company volume, up from 48.9 per cent in 2002,"​ said Stewart.

With headquarters in Irvine, Naturade​ markets natural products aimed at improving the health and well-being of consumers. Well-known for its 50 years of leadership in soy protein, Naturade is the number-one brand name of natural soy protein powders sold in food, drug and mass merchandise stores.

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