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As India’s beauty market heats up, L’Oreal global CEO, top teams of Estée Lauder, Coty, Nars come calling

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The global beauty honchos are visiting to study India’s beauty and cosmetics market that is expected to swell to a Rs 2-trillion opportunity by 2025. MNCs are looking at India as a future growth engine

Loreal CEO Nicholas Hieronimus is interested in India's beauty and cosmetic market
Nicolas Hieronimus, global chief executive of L'Oréal

New Delhi: As India’s beauty and cosmetics market heats up, a host of global honchos including L’Oréal’s global chief executive, and top management delegations of Estée Lauder and Coty are making a beeline to the country this month, according to two sources.

India calling
Nicolas Hieronimus, global chief executive of L’Oréal, is visiting India later this month to study the country’s market, according to sources. So are top delegations from Coty and Estee Lauder, they said. Hieronimus is also scheduled to meet top Indian business leaders.

The New York Stock Exchange-listed Coty Inc. markets more than 50 beauty, cosmetics and fragrances brands including Skkn, Tiffany, Vera Wang, Burberry, Calvin Klein, Chloe and Adidas among dozens of labels.

Amid an explosive growth of India’s beauty and cosmetics market, top management of global firms are eager to visit the country to scope the market as a future growth engine for their respective companies, market watchers and industry officials said.

A top executive of a prominent mall said such visits from global beauty brands have been a hallmark this year. And it has gathered pace in the recent months after the pandemic-induced hiatus.

“Top management of various beauty companies have been visiting India for the last two months,” he said. “Their teams from Singapore, Dubai or their headquarters keep visiting our mall.”

L’Oréal, Estée Lauder and Coty did not respond to IndiaRetailing’s emails seeking comment on the visits.

In September, a delegation from Japan’s Nars Cosmetics visited India to explore the country’s market and the Japanese team had held talks with Shoppers Stop, Tata Cliq and a few other Indian companies for a possible partnership. (Read about it here)

Promising segment

Brokerage firm Motilal Oswal Financial predicts India’s beauty and cosmetics market to swell to Rs 2 trillion by 2025. The growth will be driven by India’s ever-expanding e-commerce reach coupled with the propensity of Indian youth to splurge on everything from food to fashion.

The emergence of Nykaa coupled with an overall upswing trajectory in the beauty and cosmetics market over the years are prompting India’s bigwigs from Tata Group to Reliance Industries to enter the beauty retailing space. It has also spawned a sizable number of direct-to-consumer (D2C) beauty and cosmetics brands including Sugar and Mama Earth among others.

IndiaRetailing had reported in September that Reliance Retail is in process of acquiring LVMH-owned Sephora’s India business from Arvind Fashions. (Read the full story here)

Indian Beauty and cosmetics market heats up

Existing players including Lakmé, Forest Essentials, Colorbar, Himalaya and Biotique among a raft of other companies are also ramping up their offerings. Shoppers Stop, which sells Estée Lauder, Bobbi Brown and Mac among other brands through various partnerships, plans to add more than a dozen standalone beauty outlets each year in the coming years.

“We plan to open between 15 to 20 beauty stores and that will be a combination of SS Beauty as well as the boutique beauty stores of Estée Lauder Company,” Venu Nair, chief executive of Shoppers Stop told IndiaRetailing in an August interview.