Premium Beauty News - Can you tell us more about this “flat”?
Alexandrine Demachy - We set up a small team to provide our commercial branch with a creative centre. The high point was the recruitment of our own perfumer, Céline Perdriel, during lockdown. This project results from our will to offer our customers a breath of fresh air: a place to meet people, exchange, and cross-fertilize right in the heart of Paris. It is a beautiful, calm flat located Place Victor Hugo, within walking distance from the mythical avenue of the Champs- Élysées, so dear to our foreign customers. This way, we will be able to sound the city out and enhance our creativity. As a matter of fact, to create beautiful things, you need to be in a beautiful place – hence the choice of this glamorous, smart address which will help develop privileged relationships with our customers.
Premium Beauty News - Cosmo Fragrances is already in the United States and Spain. What are your business strategies in France?
Alexandrine Demachy - Cosmo Fragrances is a family company whose headquarters are actually located in Florida and are completed with two commercial antennas in NYC and Los Angeles. We are also present in Barcelona. This global dimension is now broadened with a creative centre in Paris, the perfume city par excellence. But perfume is also Grasse, in the south of France – our research centre is situated in this region, in Mougins.
Vanessa Lecomte - Our approach is based on an intimate, trust relationship with our customers, in line with the family and independent soul of our company. Our President, Marc Blaison, is also a perfumer, which makes our approach more creative. We want to take our time to create using our complete expertise: perfumer, assessor, laboratory, the whole being served by the cutting-edge technologies of our centre in Mougins.
Our strength lies in our ability to meet our local customers’ expectations, as they are abandoned by major groups who have absorbed smaller companies. We have a role to play: offering both giants’ expertise and the flexibility and warmth of a small team that can develop tailor-made perfumes. Having a creation centre in Paris is also a luxury, since medium-sized structures are now quite rare in the capital city. We want this know-how to be available to fine and high-end perfumes, but also home fragrances, which recently embraced the codes of luxury perfumery.
Premium Beauty News - This year was marked by the arrival of a house perfumer. Céline Perdriel, could you tell us about your background?
Céline Perdriel - I worked in various structures, so I have a broad vision of creation. First, I worked at Synarome, which offered me a beautiful experience of raw materials, chromatography and formulation. Then, I joined Givaudan, where my main customers were L’Oréal’s luxury brands. It was very formative and demanding: I improved my work’s creativity as part of a two-person team with 16 different perfumers – and as many methods. Lastly, in order to get closer to Grasse and natural materials, I worked at Azur Fragrances. It was an opportunity to add body care expertise to my “fine” experience. Thanks to this multifaceted background, I gradually got familiar with different markets (the US, Europe, Germany, South America).
Alexandrine Demachy’s proposal was appealing due to the company’s human-sized potential in line with what I aspired to. I like the vision of this group, because it is supported by meaningful organization and investments. It is a vision of beautiful perfumery in a very human environment, with a stimulating potential of varied markets and projects.
Alexandrine Demachy - Céline’s broad expertise, cross-disciplinary approach and propensity to be into everything are much precious to our strategy, which consists in creating diverse products with the same glamour and quality criteria. It guarantees a signature recognizable in all our creations. Contrary to a big company structured with divisions, we favour a customized approach that can fit all projects.
Céline’s dynamic personality is also valuable for all the challenges we take up, and it is in line with the energy of the women’s trio we form with Vanessa Lecomte. This synergy is crucial, because Cosmo Fragrances is a family company whose early employees are still there, but also because we need to establish long-term relationships with our customers.
Premium Beauty News - Can you tell us more about the research centre in Mougins?
Alexandrine Demachy - In 2012, we purchased a research centre near Grasse for extraction and distillation purposes. Our cutting-edge equipment offers beautiful, qualitative natural materials, like our Timur Pepper or Maté, thanks to green processes like “craftivity” or molecular distillation, in order to be as respectful of plants as possible. Cosmo selects green technologies that do not require petrochemical solvents. Everything is devised as part of an ecoresponsible approach - a real philosophy in our company.
Premium Beauty News - What are your projects?
Alexandrine Demachy - We have been working on trends and collections based on themes like Pantone 2020 Classic Blue or Rebirth, in relation to post-lockdown. And from a more general standpoint, as part of our commercial strategy, we will bring our development centre in Spain back to the heart of Barcelona: the inauguration will take place in September. It will be an opportunity to unveil our new communication strategy and logo.
Premium Beauty News - What is your vision of the market?
Alexandrine Demachy - Lockdown reinforced the public’s expectations in terms of reasonable and responsible consumption. Brands will have to adapt to this new situation by reinventing the pleasure of buying with meaningful products that can seduce consumers in every possible way. We will need to reconcile the notions of dream, glamour and ecology with beautiful refillable bottles, for example.
But perfume exhales a part of magic which will always be fascinating, because, as could be seen during lockdown, there is still a way to do yourself good and escape. It is a reassuring, caring value that is precious in these uncertain times.