Chilean Beauty Grows

The Chilean beauty market grew 9.5% in the first quarter of 2010, and it’s projected that the second semester will also be positive—with the annual growth expected to be 8–9%. Álvaro Marquez, vice president of the Cosmetic Industry Chamber of Chile, told GCI magazine that to reach this sales growth: “The industry [must exert] some control over cosmetic products and regulations to [eliminate] contraband and knockoff products that invade the country every day.” In 2009, government health authorities, who are no longer in office, tried to modify the current cosmetics regulation, but have, thus far, only been successful with sun protection labeling, baby products, hyperallergen products and dental pastes with fluoride.

The new regime will be faced with a large number of commercial obstacles, in terms of imports, exports and the innumerable barriers due to the large number of global free trade agreements that Chile has signed, according to the source.

Topline Opens Manufacturing in Mexico

Topline Products, a packaging supplier and filler, announced the establishment of a manufacturing facility in Reynosa, Mexico. The New Jersey-based firm currently has five manufacturing facilities in China and aims to increase its global presence through the opening of its first North American plant.

Headed by Brian Rayner, the 26,000 square-foot facility will initially run filling operations for fragrance and nail enamel products, as well as the assembling of cosmetics gift sets. According to Topline’s president Charles Chang, the factory will benefit customers by reducing their working capital costs and supply chain lead time. “The new plant adds value to our services by enhancing customer productivity and inventory management operations,” he said.

Godrej Consumer Products to Buy Argentine Issue Group

India’s Godrej Consumer Products (GCPL) acquired Argentina-based Issue Group for an undisclosed amount. The Indian company now owns 100% of the Issue Group—which includes Cuenca Laboratories, Consell, Issue Uruguay and Issue Brazil, and holds a leading position in the Argentine hair-color sector with a market share in excess of 20% and revenues of more than $33 million in 2009. The acquisition is part of GCPL’s plan to have a presence in three continents—Asia, Africa and Latin America, states a GCPL representative.

Roberto Hlace, president of Issue Group, told GCI magazine that the new president of the company will be Adi Grodej, current president of GCPL, while the vice-president will be Argentine Antonio Cao, current CEO of Issue Group. In addition, GCPL has entered in negotiations to acquire a 100% stake in Argentine company Argencos, which specializes in hair spray products.

Joico Arrives in Argentina

The hair care brand Joico has started commercializing its products in Argentina through distributor Bright Star. Joico entered the Argentine market with its K-Pak line and K-Pak professional products for the care of damaged and chemically treated hair, as well as the Style and Finish styling line and the Color Endure line for hair coloring and preservation.

Locally, Joico will face competition from L’Oréal Professional and Wella. Joico currently owns market share in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Brazil.

Advances in Uruguay Regulation

Ariel Saiz, the secretary of the Uruguayan Chamber of Perfumery, Cosmetics and Toiletries, told GCI magazine, “The elimination of the government tax of 11.5% (called IMESI) on sun protection products, which went in to effect on Jan. 1, 2010, was a huge step in terms of local regulation.”

“The next challenges for the Uruguayan Chamber will be to eliminate the government tax on the rest of cosmetic products in the country, a move that has already been done in Brazil and Argentina,” said Saiz. The beauty industry in the region is working toward integration and functioning with the Uruguayan branch of the Council of Associations of the Latin American Cosmetics Industry (CASIC)—an organization that works toward the harmonization of legislations and elimination of various trade barriers and obstacles, among other objectives, in order to stimulate growth in the beauty sector.

Launch of Lifebuoy in Argentina

Unilever recently introduced Lifebuoy products in Argentina. The company launched an extensive campaign in Argentina, defining Lifebuoy as the number one antibacterial soap in the world. The brand will face competition from Espadol by Reckitt Benckiser and Pervinox by Phoenix.

Lifebuoy enters the market with two anti-bacterial soaps: individual soap bars that come in four varieties (Total, Cream, Nature and Fresh) and liquid form (in Total and Cream varieties). At the time of the launch, Lifebuoy soaps could also be purchased in a multipack form, featuring individual bars in four varieties. Lifebuoy currently sells its products in 40 countries around the globe.

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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