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Packaging & design

HCT takes advantage of the dynamism of California beauty brands and of the Chinese growth

Just a little over a year ago, Tim Thorpe, President of the HCT Group, had detailed the new strategy of his Group, specialized in Beauty Packaging and Full Service. The last financial year 2014/2015 (March/April) will be up to the expectations and the next one looks very promising too with an expected increase in sales exceeding 10%.

Tim Thorpe

Tim Thorpe

The Thorpe family definitely had a very good idea to choose to establish its headquarters in Santa Monica (Los Angeles) several years ago. “We certainly had a lot of flair,” admits Tim Thorpe, “but it is true that reality exceeded our expectations.” So much so that today more than 60% of the Group’s global turnover is achieved on the West Coast.

The end customer is very discerning and the cosmetic industry has to react quickly and establish their point of difference. May West Coast brands recognize this and HCT Group has fulfilled the demand for unique and highly sought out products,” we were told at the headquarters in Santa Monica.

And to achieve this,” explains Thorpe, “it’s a straightforward business model: master the production of all components, at the lowest costs, in a timely manner and with the highest quality level.

With seven production sites in Asia in the form of joint ventures present on every industrial compartments, proposing among other services, plastic injection, metal and Zamac processing, surface treatment, brush manufacture and filling operations, HCT has beautifully managed to fulfill its contract to such an extent that the company has become unquestionably the world leader in its field in terms of turnover.

The booming Chinese domestic market

The additional plus,” we were told in Santa Monica, “being that we are strong on most global markets and also in the forefront to supply a booming Chinese domestic market.” In two years the HCT Group’s share for this market increased by 5%! And that is probably just the beginning. The craziest figures currently circulating... “But let’s keep a cool head,” tempers Thorpe, “I expect an extra 10% in 2015.”

Another shift, and not the least, taken by the beauty sector in the past decade, is the massive recourse to full service. “Again,” underlines the President of HCT, “we managed to anticipate correctly.” Nothing exceptional here, since the value added on the “pack” offer alone, could only but continue to decline. Hence the interest for HCT to produce and keep producing packs in China (the company is seeking to further increase its production capacity) and propose in parallel a fleshed out offer in formulations with on top of it, why not, an acquisition in Europe in the long term. As for the Group’s commercial positioning, Thorpe is clear: “We are making it a priority to further strengthen our commercial ties and offer our innovation to key clients who truly value it.

MakeUp in Seoul

With a turnover of more than USD 300 million for an out-of-plant staff of a little more than 200 people, the HCT Group has further consolidated its presence in both the US and Europe. “France, in particular,” emphasizes Thorpe, “has shown significant growth.

It may be recalled that the HCT Group’s product offer includes make-up cases, lipstick tubes, mascaras, lipgloss, eyeliners, brushes, applicators, and so on. Note that the Group will be attending the forthcoming MakeUp in Seoul with its partner Pum-Tech.

Jean-Yves Bourgeois

Portfolio

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