Ulta's High-Low Approach to Beauty Keeps Fueling Sales

You go, Ulta.
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Eliza Brooke
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You go, Ulta.
The Kardashians' beauty products at Ulta. Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

The Kardashians' beauty products at Ulta. Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

With a stock list ranging from drugstore brands like Eucerin and Aveeno, to pricier options like Benefit and Lancôme, Ulta has long been a go-to for beauty fanatics. Based on the company's latest financial report, that love is showing no signs of letting up. 

In the first quarter of the year — the 13 weeks leading up to May 2 — Ulta saw its sales increase nearly 22 percent to $868.1 million. (Those figures are comparable to LVMH-owned Sephora, which brought in an estimated $1 billion in sales each quarter in 2013.) If you exclude the revenue coming in from stores that opened in the last year, that was an 11.4 percent sales boost, the company's highest growth rate since 2011. A lot of that was driven by a 50 percent bump in e-commerce sales.

That sort of growth is pretty consistent with how the beauty supply chain, which now has 797 locations in operation, has been performing over the last year. Keep on keeping on, Ulta.