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Sales in Small Latin American Markets Remain Positive; Offer Potential for Foreign Brands

Cristina Kroll

Highlighting both the challenges to and promise of even the relatively small Latin American markets during the current economic climate, Ariel Saiz, spokesman for the Uruguayan Cosmetic Chamber told GCI magazine, “Expectations for [Uruguay] in 2010 are moderate at 6–8%, in comparison with the growth of 16% in 2008.” Further, Saiz noted, “Some of the main challenges to the sector are attracting new investors and partners, as well as enabling the local industry to compete with products from other markets.” In fact, a large number of beauty products in Uruguay, where annual beauty sales are estimated to be $220 million, are imported.

Cognis Expands Mexican Facility

Global specialty chemicals supplier Cognis opened a new sulfation unit at its Ecatepec, Mexico, facility in November 2009. The expansion enables Cognis to increase both the facility’s capacity and product purity, as well as target new markets in the region. “This new unit complements our existing plants and sulfation departments in Argentina, Brazil, and the United States perfectly, and enables us to cover the entire North, Central and South American surfactants market,” said Roland Spörer, site manager and director of care chemicals and supply chain, Cognis Mexico. According to a company report, “The new reactor uses crystalline sulfur instead of chlorosulfonic acid as the basis for the sulfation process, and, as a result, the products are now purer than before. In addition, the facility enables Cognis Mexico to provide items into the market with low 1,4-dioxane concentrations matching worldwide benchmarks.” These ingredients are used in products such as shampoos and shower gels.

Nail Care Brand Launches in Argentina

Impala, which offers nail polish products and treatments for hand and foot care, launched in Argentina in December 2009. The brand is available through Brazilian distributor Mundial, which has had a presence in Argentina for 12 years. “The main goal is to become a leader in the market of hand and foot care in the next five years,” Pablo Maggi, Impala’s sale manager, told GCI magazine. The products will be available in pharmacies and in high-profile locations in supermarkets, perfumeries and speciality retailers.

The brand was introduced to Argentina’s media at an event held in the Fortabat Museum, in Buenos Aries’ Puerto Madero neighborhood. Local celebrities such as Dolores Barreiro, Marcela Klosterboer and Mike Amigorena—along with models from the famous Argentine Dotto Models agency—were on hand.

Impala, which has been available in the Brazilian market for more than 30 years, offers more than 150 unique colors. Products for the Argentine market will be imported from Brazil and China.

CANIPEC Signs Agreement Toward Self-regulated Advertising

Mexico’s National Chamber of the Cosmetics Industry (CANIPEC) and Brazil’s National Advertising Regulatory Council (CONAR) signed the first Code of Self-regulation and Publicity Ethics for Cosmetics (COSMEP) in November 2009. According to a report from CANIPEC, “This agreement represents an advance toward improving advertising of cosmetics, benefiting consumers.” The initiative seeks to provide consumers with clear and truthful information about cosmetics, generate appropriate competition in the market and strengthen current regulation. “The endorsement of 71 companies affiliated with CANIPEC is only the beginning,” said William Hidalgo, president, CANIPEC.

Argentine Brand/Retailer Launches in North America

Argentine brand/retailer La Pasionaria entered the North American market through an agreement with cosmetic distributor Smallflower, located in Chicago. “Smallflower is owned by Anthony Qaiyum, and it will begin distributing La Pasionaria products in the United States and Canada during the first quarter of 2010,” La Pasionaria director and founder Carina Cavazza told GCI magazine. In addition, the company opened a franchise in Costa Rica in December 2009. The company—which produces more than 50 different kinds of soaps as well as lotions and essences—has three points of sale in Rosario City (in Argentina’s Santa Fe province) and one door in the Unicenter Shopping Centre in Buenos Aries. It also operates franchises in Buenos Aires province.

New Marketing Director at Bright Star Chile

Jorge Godoy was named marketing and sales director for the Chilean Bright Star Group. According to Godoy’s statement, he will be in charge of P&G brands such as Lacoste, Hugo Boss, Valentino, Escada, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana and Puma. He will also head marketing and sales efforts for the Argentine division, for which he began working in 2005. Godoy will have the task of developing and applying additional strategies to the different points of sale in order to improve the quality of the service and increase the presence in the market.

Bright Star Group is a major beauty distributor in Latin America, offering a diverse range of luxury lines. It also has operations in Brazil and Paraguay.

Argentinean Celebrity Launches Beauty Brand

Argentinean actress and model Andrea Frigerio introduced Roses are Roses. The brand launches in two doors—Palmas del Pilar Shopping Mall and Paseo Alcorta Shopping Centre, both in Buenos Aires. The brand offers a variety of creams, colognes and soaps in very elegant packaging. And as a differentiator, it offers spicy, floral and citric essences that can be mixed and used in combinations.

Cristina Kroll is a business journalist specializing in the beauty sector and living in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She has written for the main Argentine magazines related to the beauty business, and was a correspondent for French magazine Beauty Business News.

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