NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Milani cosmetics and its founder Sonia Gandhi are going through a turnaround after the brand’s sales plunged in the first quarter of 2017 due to the launch of its flagship Sonia Gandhi cosmetics brand.
The cosmetics giant said on Thursday that the business in India has been hit by the political fallout from the deadly gang rape and the ongoing fallout from India’s high profile political crisis.
In the first half of this year, the sales of its Sonia Gandhi brand in India fell 11 percent to $1.5 billion, its lowest annual sales since 2009.
The brand’s revenues in India’s largest market, the United States, also dropped 5 percent to about $1 billion.
“Sales of Sonia Gandhi were impacted by the election and the fallout of the violence, and the brand has since recovered, but it is a tough business,” a company spokesperson said in a statement.
Milani said its sales in India dropped to $2.7 billion in the fourth quarter of the current fiscal year, which ended in April.
In the same period last year, sales in the country rose 5 percent.
Milania, based in the United Kingdom, is owned by the Swiss multinational conglomerate JCB.
It has about 3,000 employees.
Its products include lipsticks, lip glosses, face and body products and skincare.
Milanese cosmetics, which also owns brand name cosmetics brands such as Milani Beauty and Mousse, said in April that it was cutting more than a third of its staff in India as it struggles to recover from the political storm.
Milans sister brand, Sonia Gandhi, which sells in India, also saw a drop in sales to $9.4 million in the same quarter, from $21 million a year earlier.
The brands had also been suffering a drop.
Milanism also said it would focus on improving the sales in emerging markets, which are key to its business.
“India, with its large number of consumers, is a market that we need to invest in and that will help us achieve our objectives, said a company spokesman.