L'Oréal opens cosmetics research centre in South Africa

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Nicola Mira
today Jul 21, 2016
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The L'Oréal cosmetics group has opened a new research and innovation centre in Johannesburg, South Africa, "focusing on the specificities of African skin and hair" and on the expectations of sub-Saharan consumers.

"This new centre will allow us to intensify our efforts to create the beauty products of the future dedicated to our African consumers, while drawing inspiration from the beauty rituals and the highly diverse requirements of our consumers living in this continent," stated Alexandre Popoff, L'Oréal's General Manager for eastern Europe, Africa and the Middle East, cited in a press release.

Sub-Saharan Africa is a vigorously growing area for L'Oréal.

Last year, the group generated a revenue of €727.9 million in the Africa-Middle East region. This was equivalent to a 12.1% rise in like-for-like terms, and a 28.1% one in published figures, making it the group's highest-growth area worldwide.

L'Oréal took its first steps there in 2003, by opening an assessment centre in South Africa, focused on evaluating products and consumer knowledge in the region.

Consumer surveys and research on skin and hair "are the foundations of our know-how for the development of tailor-made products" aimed at African consumers, explained Laurent Attal, L'Oréal's Managing Director for Research and Innovation, in the press release.

"We started with haircare, and we are targeting also make-up, body care, toiletries and skincare," he added.

The new centre has a staff of 20 and will collaborate with the region's scientific community, notably universities, dermatologists and hair stylists.

The value of the investment in the centre was not disclosed.

L'Oréal aims to offer products that are increasingly targeted to different skin and hair types, and also to adapt to regional beauty cultures. This has lead to the creation of six other cosmetics research centres worldwide, in France, the USA, Japan, China, India and Brazil.


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