Finding itself in the enviable position of having about $30 million more than it expected in the fourth-quarter, Colgate-Palmolive ploughed the windfall into extra marketing, chairman/ceo Reuben Mark informed analysts Tuesday.

Mark did not disclose how much of the money – the result of reduced tax rates in Italy – went on media advertising, though he added that the dental products giant has been increasing its use of integrated marketing and retail promotions.

Among other projects it benefited, the unexpected cash bonus helped shift the British and Canadian launch of Colgate oral care gum from early this year to late 2001.

According to Mark, the group usually has a list of such programmes to aid should extra money appear. Discovered after a conference call in late October, the additional fourth-quarter funds were spent by December.

The move is slightly out of character for Colgate, which has been known to cut Q4 marketing spend to meet profit targets. However, Mark added that the group’s promotional budget would be raised this year, and by more than $30m – good news for its global agency Y&R Advertising.

The news came as Colgate reported a 3% rise in Q4 net income to $295.3 million on flat sales of $2.4 billion.

News source:; Colgate-Palmolive