Kimberly-Clark Corporation today reported that net sales in the third quarter of 2010 increased 1.3 percent to $5.0 billion. Organic sales rose 1 percent, driven by higher sales volumes of 1 percent, while net selling prices were even with year-ago levels. The I-Flow Corporation acquisition completed in 2009 added an additional point of sales growth, while changes in foreign currency rates reduced sales by 1 percent. The growth in organic sales volumes was highlighted by a 5 percent gain for the company's personal care business, with broad-based strength in most regions of the world. However, volumes declined in the company's K-C Professional business in a challenging economic environment, and in Kimberly-Clark's operations in Venezuela.
Diluted net income per share for the quarter was $1.14 compared with all-time record results of $1.40 in 2009. Although performance benefited from organic top-line volume growth and significant cost savings, bottom-line results declined, primarily due to cost inflation of $265 million. Meanwhile, the company continued to invest to support its brands and future growth opportunities, as both strategic marketing and research and development spending increased faster than sales in the quarter.