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P&G: Ready, Steady, and a Little Go

By Amy Tsao

SLIPPING INTO SALONS. The beauty division has soared from the purchase of Clairol from Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY ) in 2001. Profits jumped 19%, to $147 million, as sales rose 18%, to $1.4 billion in the fiscal third quarter ended Mar. 31.

Now, P&G is looking to buy Wella, the German hair-care outfit, for another boost. It picked up the majority of Wella's shares in March and is negotiating with a minority stockholder to take full control in a deal worth more than $6.4 billion in total. If approved, the Wella purchase would position P&G in professional outlets like salons, particularly in Europe and Latin Americ

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