Premium Beauty News - What are your assets and ambitions for this market?

Arnaud Williart - Brazil is the 3rd largest cosmetic market in the world, and it has a tremendous potential, so we had to be there too. It undoubtedly has a very strong inclination toward Cosmétique Végétale®, so since Yves Rocher actives are derived from the botanical world, and their efficacy is claimed by science, our brand has everything it needs to succeed there. Besides, our Brazilian signature is “O poder das plantas. A Certeza da ciència”: the power of plants sublimated by science.

This market should be approached with both humility and determination. This year, we first intend to open about ten stores in large cities such as Sᾶo Paulo and Rio, depending on the opportunities for good locations.

We also launched our e-store website on May 1st to cover the whole country’s territory:

The Yves Rocher outlet at the Morumbi Shopping Centre, Sao Paulo

The Yves Rocher outlet at the Morumbi Shopping Centre, Sao Paulo

Premium Beauty News - Will they be wholly owned stores?

Arnaud Williart - We are already present over there, not via a subsidiary, but through a distribution partner. We do intend to start with wholly owned stores, but given the craze for franchises in this country, they will also be a way for us to develop once our model has been validated.

Premium Beauty News - Is the brand already known to Brazilian consumers?

Arnaud Williart - The Yves Rocher brand has already made itself a name in Brazil, especially to travelling Brazilians. Some of them already know exactly what they want.

Premium Beauty News - Are products made in Brazil?

Arnaud Williart - For the moment we stick to an export model, but of course, depending how things go, we have no rule against a local production with industrial partners, starting with heavy products to be transported, in order to reduce the environmental impact. Our decision will be determined by our capacity to have enough volume and set up a local production for reasonable costs. We will sort this out over the next one or two years, I guess.

Premium Beauty News - So do prices get higher?

Arnaud Williart - Brazil’s customs protectionism makes the product registration procedure pretty heavy and costly, which does also make products more expensive. Unfortunately, we do have to pass an increase in logistics costs and import taxes on to the customer, but we endeavour to minimize this impact and keep products easily available.

Premium Beauty News - Which specificities are taken into account when selecting the products?

Arnaud Williart - In the hygiene category, it has to be noted that the market is towards soap rather than shower gels; that is a first point. As for perfumery, Brazil is the country of body mist, so we have put an emphasis on ranges such as the very floral and fresh “Un Matin au Jardin”. We are also thinking about developing a specific body mist range. In the segment of skincare, we favour lighter textures to meet the needs of combination and oily skins, which represent a vast majority in this country. This approach is actually backed up by the first results of the UV Beauty Shield, which combines a light texture and an SPF 50 protection. We are arriving in Brazil with the core of our catalogue, that is, 530 references, including the make-up shades.

The first feedback from the Morumbi shopping mall in Sao Paulo is pretty good, with our perfumes proving really popular.

Premium Beauty News - Do you have a supply chain for raw materials in Brazil?

Arnaud Williart - Yves Rocher is supplied by cooperatives and associations in the State of Pará through its Brazilian supply partner, and also supports the organization, training, economic development, and therefore empowerment of local communities. We purchase several materials in Brazil, including organic Andiroba, which is used for instance in a dry oil, such as in our Riche Crème, now a cult product. The Yves Rocher Laboratories have also selected the organic Andiroba nut oil, a true botanical treasure from the Amazon basin.

Premium Beauty News - Where will the next stores be opened?

Arnaud Williart - We are opening a second store in Sao Paulo in the next few days at the Center Norte shopping mall, and a third one will be inaugurated in early June in Rio.