Éric Bouvier - Indeed, Strand Cosmetics and Marvinpac have been working together for more than three years as part of MS Swiss Cosmetics, a joint venture dedicated to the development, manufacturing and packaging of Swiss made skincare and make-up products. We realized very quickly that other synergies were possible, beyond the “Made in Switzerland”, especially through the use of the Marvinpac site in the Czech Republic. This collaboration has already enabled us to win new interesting tenders.
In addition, building on these early successes, we started to give wider consideration to an even closer partnership and laid out hard data. We defined a strategic plan, with, as a first step, Marvinpac taking a minority but yet significant stake in Strand Cosmetics Europe.
Ludovic Hericher - Beyond the strategic aspects, there is also a human adventure behind this. As soon as we started working together on the MS Swiss Cosmetics project the contribution from our teams, was already very strong, which encouraged us to go one step further.Premium Beauty News - What are the objectives of this merger?
Éric Bouvier - This will allow us to significantly broaden our offer. Depending on our customers’ needs, we will be able to offer made in France, made in Switzerland, or European products.
Ludovic Hericher - Brands that trust us can now rely on three industrial tools complying with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) standards, some of which are specific to the production of OTC products.
This will help us better meet the growing expectations of brands in terms of production capacity, responsiveness and competitiveness. Bulk is always produced in France or Switzerland to respect the designation of origin dear to our customers. Some filling operations can also be carried out in the Czech Republic to offer our customers very competitive costs. Through our three sites, we can therefore guarantee a continuity of production (Business continuity plan or BCP), an increasingly important parameter for brands.
Premium Beauty News - With some investments on top of it?
Éric Bouvier - Of course! Mainly in order to further strengthen our production capacities, in both Switzerland and France. At Strand Cosmetics Europe’s site, near Lyon, where many things have already been done, we will continue to increase our bulk production and filling capacity.
Ludovic Hericher - New investments are also planned in Switzerland and we will boost our production capacity in the Czech Republic where are performed filling operations for jars, vials, BB cream-type compacts, and tubes in a certified high hygiene environment audited by leading brands. Several million pieces are already filled and conditioned. The aim is to further strengthen these capacities and expand further our portfolios with new product lines.
Premium Beauty News - Will this merger lead to a specialization of your production sites?
Ludovic Hericher - This is not on the agenda, but we will continue to work to strengthen synergies where they really make sense. The MS Swiss Cosmetics experience has demonstrated that with an efficient staff, we are already capable of achieving substantial revenues and are ready to record a fine growth with the premium brands trusting us. We rely on the infrastructure of our respective companies, particularly in terms of R & D, regulatory affairs, marketing and sales, industrialization and supply chain. Today, to support brands in their new needs, agility in a fast track mode is required to be ready willing and able to respond to their important growth driven needs. For this, working in close connection with our customers and a rigorous follow-up are the key. It is therefore important that each of our entities remain relatively autonomous while benefiting from the Group’s synergies.
Éric Bouvier - Let us also specify that all entities will keep their own identity.
Premium Beauty News - There is a growing concentration of players in the cosmetics subcontracting area. The accelerating of pace of launches and the increasing demands of brands on their distributors seem to generate increasing pressure?
Éric Bouvier - Undeniably pressure is increasing in terms of prices and deadlines. We must support the growth of brands by offering as much flexibility as possible. The supply chain becomes a strategic element of the offer and this calls for significant resources requirements, both human and industrial. We just hired a Supply Chain Director coming from a large group in the medical device industry.
Ludovic Hericher - Full service has always been part of Marvinpac’s DNA. At a time when demand from brands is becoming stronger and more complex, the rapprochement with Strand Cosmetics Europe is the guarantee to offer our customers a one-stop window offering R & D, bulk manufacturing, filling operations and even the preparation of shipments, not to mention regulatory issues. We can also offer our specific knowledge for co-packing, the manufacturing of assembled boxes and kitting in our site in the Czech Republic. In short, as you can see, we are more than ever in working order!
PremiumBeautynews - What are the next steps?
Éric Bouvier, Ludovic Hericher - We are launching a series of meetings bringing together our teams to build a joint marketing and sales strategy in cosmetics, with offers that integrate the specificity, expertise and identity of our sites.