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The Body Shop Taking Bigger Stake in Brazil

By: Fernanda Bonifacio
Posted: February 21, 2014, from the March 2014 issue of GCI Magazine.

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“In the last two years, our innovation rate was 67.2%, and funding provided by FINEP will help us to keep up with the pace,” says Gerson Pinto, vice president of innovation, Natura. From January to September 2013, Natura invested R$125.9 million (2.6% of its net revenue) in R&D.

Abril Acquires Online Beauty Retailer Meu Espelho

One of the largest media conglomerates in Latin America, Abril, has taken a step forward in its strategy to expand its digital business division with the acquisition of online beauty retailer Meu Espelho (‘My Mirror’). It is Abril’s first acquisition in the e-commerce space, and the company will rely on the strength of its women’s magazines to boost the sales of fragrances and beauty products.

Meu Espelho has a product portfolio that includes luxury brands Clinique, L’Occitane and Lancôme, and Abril’s goal is to double the number of items currently available on the website.

Founders Bianca Latgé and Renata Merquior will continue to run the company. “The vast experience of the website’s founding team along with Abril’s diverse readership provide us with great expectations in this promising market,” says Martin Scott Greenblat, digital business director, Abril.

Delays in Product Registration Affect the Industry

Preliminary data by ABIHPEC (the Brazilian Association of Cosmetics) shows the smallest growth rate in the past 17 years. According to the organization, the industry’s performance was hampered by product registration delays by the regulatory body ANVISA.

“In 2013, we had a five-month delay in the approval of new products,” says João Carlos Basilio, president, ABIHPEC. Industry losses are estimated at R$1 billion, having affected more than 2,000 products. Reportedly, approximately 300 tenders will be called by ANVISA in early 2014, which should expedite the process.

Fernanda Bonifacio is a Brazilian journalist who focuses on the beauty industry, and has been published in the U.S. and Europe. She represented ABIHPEC and its member companies globally from 2002–2008. She has also been a communications consultant for raw material manufacturer Beraca since 2009.