Nature's Sunshine Products Inc. (NASDAQ:NATR) Q3 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript
Nov 07, 2018 • 05:30 pm ET
Greetings, and welcome to the Nature's Sunshine Products Third Quarter 2018 Earnings Conference. All participants are in a listen-only mode and this conference is being recorded.
I would now like to turn the conference over to your host, Mr. Nate Brower, General Counsel of Nature's Sunshine Products. Thank you, Mr. Brower you now have the floor.
Good afternoon, and thanks to all of you for joining our conference call to discuss our third quarter 2018 financial results. This call is available for replay in a live webcast that we posted on our website at www.naturessunshine.com in the Investors section.
(Forward-Looking Cautionary Statements)
I will now turn the call over to Terrence Moorehead, CEO of Nature's Sunshine Products.
Thank you, Nate, and good afternoon, everyone. And thank you for joining us for today's call. Our CFO, Joe Baty, is unable to join us today. So I have with me our Corporate Controller, Jon Lanoy. It's my pleasure to join you today for my first quarterly conference call as CEO. I've only had a few weeks on the ground, but my initial priorities have focused on understanding the business, our people, the processes and capabilities, all of which have made Nature's Sunshine a great company for the last 45 years.
There's a lot to absorb, and we've developed a very rigorous onboarding progress -- process to help move things forward. And from there, we'll shift gears to focus on building a strong team, creating a strategic roadmap, ensuring up our operational discipline in an effort to drive growth, improve profitability and enhance shareholder value. So I look forward to sharing our progress with you over the coming quarters.
Let me begin today with a brief overview of our third quarter results, and then I'll turn the call over to Jon to walk you through the results in greater detail. For the third quarter, we reported a modest decline in net sales of 0.4% on a local currency basis and earnings per share of $0.08 per diluted share. Our sales performance continues to reflect strong growth in Synergy Asia Pacific, NSP Russia, Central and Eastern Europe and China. This growth was offset by declines in NSP America and in Synergy in Europe and America.
Strong sales momentum in South Korea, which increased 27% during the third quarter, continues to drive Synergy Asia Pacific. In China, the third quarter growth of 19% is compared with our initial launch, following the receipt of our business license and the significant ramp-up of our business a year ago. We continue to be optimistic about our long-term growth opportunities in China, and I recently returned from the market, where I was able to see our operations and meet our local team.
As I mentioned, there's still tremendous potential in that market. Net sales in NSP Americas remain below prior year, and the team is still in the process of strengthening our positioning in that market. There has been a lot of effort in this much more mature segment of