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Mary Kay Expands Footprint; Products in India

By: Priyanka Bhattacharya
Posted: August 31, 2010, from the September 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

After successfully marketing and selling its products through its beauty consultants across India’s major cities, Mary Kay is planning to invest more in strengthening its presence in the northeast region of the country in cities such as Dimapur, Kohima, Aizwal, Mizoram, Nagaland and Guwahati. The company seeks to expand its business in these traditionally slow markets in order to empower the women of the region.

According to Hina Nagarajan, Mary Kay’s India manager, the company is also expanding its portfolio of products to meet the growing demand from the region. She adds that Mary Kay expects great things from the growing market in the northeast. In fact, this expansion plan is part of the company’s aim to invest $20 million there in the next five years.

Facial Care Segment Sees Highest Growth

According to a recent report released by research firm RNCOS, facial care is the fastest-growing segment in India’s skin care category. The market research report, “Indian Cosmetic Sector Analysis (2009–2012),” states that increasing awareness about personal grooming will lead the skin care market to register a strong compound annual growth rate of nearly 13% through 2012, reaching $365 million.

The success of this sub-segment is largely driven by the facial creams—including moisturizers, fairness creams, and day and night creams. Although, the demand in this segment has been primarily driven by female consumers, the trend is quickly changing. Increasing influence of media and exposure to the Western culture are bringing about tremendous shift in the mindset of male consumers in India, who are now demanding more skin care products in a bid to enhance their looks. This will further spur the growth of the Indian skin care segment.

In addition, female consumers are increasingly becoming skin savvy and understand the need for targeted products. They have moved from all purpose moisturizers to specific creams that include antiaging and skin-whitening benefits. Further, the target consumer is mostly women 25–45 who are working, have more dispensable income and are ready to experiment in order to look groomed and younger.

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