Amorepacific: Britain this year, Germany next
After launching in France last year, South Korean cosmetics company Amorepacific aims to introduce one of its luxury brands in Britain this year and in Germany next year.
It began selling its luxury Sulwhasoo brand of creams and other cosmetic products in Galeries Lafayette department store in Paris in September.
Amorepacific Europe head Thierry Maman, hired in 2015 from the perfume and beauty arm of LVMH’s Givenchy, says the Paris outlet is a good testing ground.
The group first tried to break into the French cosmetics market 30 years ago but withdrew after just two years because of poor sales. It bought French perfume house Annick Goutal in 2011.
Maman says France is a tough market, but Sulwhasoo is betting on drawing customers with its traditional herbal-inspired formulas.
Amorepacific’s European revenues, including Goutal, are less than €50 million (US$60 million) annually but are expected to rise by 20 per cent is year, he says.
Sales were hit last year when diplomatic tensions with China cut back Chinese tourists to South Korea. Relations are now on the mend, but Amorepacific’s sales fell 8 per cent to about KW4 trillion (US$3.76 billion) in the year to September.