L’Oréal announced the retirement of Jean-François Grollier, executive vice president and managing director of R&D, effective the end of 2009. Laurent Attal, president and CEO of L’Oréal USA for the past four years, will assume the role, overseeing L’Oréal's research laboratories, and will take charge of all teams from both the current R&D function as well as the innovation department.
Grollier began his career at L’Oréal 40 years ago as a chemical engineer. In 1991, he became the company’s first head of both advanced and applied R&D. Convinced that beauty is, above all, an area of expertise in the field of life sciences, Grollier opened up the research function, at the time exclusively focused on chemistry, to include biology and life sciences—thus anticipating some of the cosmetic industry’s most significant revolutions, according to the company. He also developed an intelligence system for monitoring technological evolutions toward product safety.
Attal trained as a doctor and has an MBA from INSEAD (Paris). He joined L’Oréal in 1986. After having directed Vichy and boosted its development, Attal was given full responsibility for the active cosmetics division, where he redefined the brand portfolio, accelerating its internationalization. In his last role, Attal was instrumental in the pursuit of several major successes in the North American region—including the launch of Garnier skin care, a number of strategic acquisitions (notably in the professional products division) and establishing the active cosmetics division.
Frédéric Rozé will succeed Attal as president and CEO of L’Oréal USA in July 2009. He joined L’Oréal in 1986, and took on the role of managing director of the consumer products division of L’Oréal Russia before being appointed general manager of Gemey France in 1996. As managing director of L’Oréal Argentina, which at the time was suffering from a major economic crisis, he worked to secure the recovery of the subsidiary. In 2002, he was appointed head of the consumer products division and professional products division in Spain, one of the group’s largest markets.