At the Personal Care Products Council’s 118th Annual Meeting in Naples, Florida, more than 470 industry leaders gathered to discuss the opportunities and challenges facing the global beauty, cosmetic and personal care products industry in the coming year, to highlight recent accomplishments and to elect new officers.
Newly elected council chairman E. Scott Beattie, chairman and CEO for Elizabeth Arden, said the council will focus this year on legislative advocacy and regulatory policies, strengthening the cosmetic ingredient review (CIR) program to support product safety, working to harmonize global regulation, and building and defending the reputation of the industry. He also highlighted the participation at the meeting of nine international trade associations.
“I’m sure the international meeting this week will result in stronger cross-country, cross-regional and cross-functional collaboration to secure our right to innovate and sell products globally,” Beattie said.
Retiring council chairman Dan Brestle highlighted the economic and political challenges the council faced during his tenure and praised the industry for coming together to “emerge a stronger and more resilient industry” with a turnaround in U.S. sales in the luxury category, an uptick in mass and the emergence of a growing men’s personal grooming business. He pointed to how beauty consumers are changing the game, noting their increased sophistication, and how the traditional shopper has “gone from a passive receiver of information” to one who “controls the conversation.”
Brestle also noted the dramatic recent changes in consumer behavior and urged industry leaders to focus on product innovation, growth and technology. “Innovation is hard, it’s expensive, it requires great talent and it relies on a wide and full palette of ingredients with which to work,” he commented. “You must not let this industry be hamstrung by legislation or regulation that limits the introduction of new, safe ingredients or bans the use of others we’ve used safely for decades.”
Council president and CEO Lezlee Westine outlined key council accomplishments in 2011, including obtaining bipartisan support for the industry’s legislative proposal to strengthen and enhance regulatory oversight of cosmetics, streamlining the cosmetic ingredient review process, advocating for international harmonization of cosmetic regulations throughout the world, and engaging in social media and other communication’s platforms to get the facts out about product and ingredient safety.
“We will continue our work and build on these accomplishments in the coming year to help ensure a business environment that enables this industry to continue to grow and delight its consumers with safe, innovative products,” Westine said.
Other highlights from the annual meeting included keynote speaker and founder of Trendhunter.com Jeremy Gutsche, who spoke on how to spot new trends and highlighted the importance of innovation, and a panel discussion—with Bonnie Fuller, media executive and editor of HollywoodLife.com, Chris Elshaw, EVP and COO, Revlon, Inc., Kevin Gallagher, president, Croda, Inc., Emrah Kovacoglu, CEO of Total Beauty Media Group, and Cosimo Policastro, EVP, fine fragrance, Givaudan—that examined how new raw materials and ingredients contribute to innovative product features. Political analysts Charlie Cook and Stuart Rothenberg shared their predictions for the November elections and what they could mean for the beauty industry, and attendees heard insights from leading consumer trends experts from Essence magazine, Univision Communications, and GQ.
The council also elected the following officers:
- Chairman: Scott Beattie, chairman, president and CEO, Elizabeth Arden
- Vice chairs: Virginia Drosos, group president, global female grooming, P&G; Chris Elshaw, EVP and COO, Revlon; and Heidi Manheimer, CEO, Shiseido Cosmetics (USA)
- Secretary: Linda Marshall, CEO, Elysee Scientific Cosmetics
- Treasurer: David Holl, president and CEO, Mary Kay