THE BUSINESSWEEK 50 RANKINGS + 25

8

Colgate-Palmolive

Sometime this year, Reuben Mark, CEO of Colgate-Palmolive since 1984, will step down and be succeeded by Englishman Ian Cook. Mark, famous for consistent execution, rallied his well-trained global management team to pull Colgate out of a rough patch a few years back by redoubling the focus on its highest-margin soap, pet food, and oral care products. Competing against Procter & Gamble, Colgate hasn’t always seemed innovative enough to keep up. But this year’s crop of new products, which include Colgate Max Fresh Kiss Me Mint toothpaste, has done fine, helped by a big boost in worldwide ad spending.

Overall Grade

A

Market Data

CL

Market Value
(2/28/2007)

$34.6 Billion

Profitability*

55.0%

A

Sales Growth Rate**

7.3%

B-

12-Month Sales

$12.2 Billion

12-Month Net Income

$1.4 Billion

Total Return Past 12 Months

26.3%

Past 36 Months

29.2%

Economic SectorConsumer Staples
IndustryHousehold Products
The overall sector letter grade reflects how the weighted average of the return on income, or return on equity, and sales growth grades compare with others in the same sector. For the overall grade as well as the ROE/ROI and sales growth grades, an "A" places a company in the top 7% of its sector and an "A-" in the top 14% of the sector. The actual ranking was done using the underlying numerical measures. Grades are for information only.
* For nonfinancial companies, three-year average pretax operating profit before interest and special items as a percentage of average invested capital. For financial companies, pretax profits as a percentage of average shareholder's equity.
*Three-year average annual sales growth based on the most recently reported 36 months, calculated using the least-squares method.

Reuben Mark

Reuben Mark, 68

CEO since 1984


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Data as of 2/28/07 provided by Standard & Poor's Compustat