According to L’Oréal, this is a premiere in the cosmetics industry. The world’s leading personal care manufacturer has just inaugurated in Lyon, France, a centre dedicated to the predictive evaluation of the safety and efficacy of cosmetics ingredients and finished products.

Continuing L’Oréal’s operations in skin engineering dedicated to safety assessment, in particular through its Episkin SNC subsidiary, the new Predictive Evaluation Centre is the outcome of 30 years of research and investments.

Its main purpose? To address L’Oréal’s ambition “to remain a pioneer in the technological advancement of evaluation and innovation,” says Jean-Paul Agon, the group’s President and CEO. Indeed, L’Oréal already handles several tools and softwares and reconstructed human tissues, and has gained expertise in technologies such as tissue engineering, molecule design, imaging, modelling and automated test platforms, that allow the group to reduce the number of clinical tests as well as time to market.

The centre is the result of a EUR 16 million investment: EUR 7 million in 2000, and EUR 9 million in 2010. It currently produces over 130,000 reconstructed biological skin and corneal tissue units per year. In 2011, it will have capacity to evaluate over 1000 products for safety (formulae or raw materials) and 100 ingredients for efficacy. L’Oréal also decided to put this centre at the very heart of an international hub connecting L’Oréal’s French, Chinese and Singaporean Research & Innovation activities. As the centre of the network, it will develop the integrated predictive strategy, while incorporating information from the L’Oréal’s other international Research & Innovation centres with the goal to develop innovation that caters for the world’s diversity of consumers.

The mark of strong research is its ability to anticipate,” explains Laurent Attal, the group’s Vice-President of Research and Innovation. “The L’Oreal Predictive Evaluation Center will lead to the discovery of new forms of efficacy and new levels of performance, paving the way for breakthrough innovations.