Below is a look at the company's 2020 highlights, recent acquisitions, best-selling brands, and latest innovations.
- Kazutoshi Kobayashi, president and chief executive officer
- Shinichi Mochizuki, senior executive officer and chief financial officer
- Decorte, Jill Stuart, Sekkisei MYV
- Infinity, Predia, Addiction
- Paul Stuart, Awake, Tarte
- Sekkisei, One by Kosé, Shirosumi
- Hadakiwami, Astablanc, Esprique
- Carté Clinity, Crie, Phil Naturant
- Formule, Maihada, Visée
- Fasio, Elsia, Nature & Co
- SportsBeauty, Nailholic, Stephen Knoll New York
- Softymo, Je l’aime, Clear Turn
- Suncut, Kokutousei, Grace One
- Decorté Comfort Day Mist Set & Protect
- AQ Lotion and AQ Emulsion Brightening
- Jill Stuart Moonlit Dew lip color
- Sekkisei MYV lotion
- emulsion and cream
Overall, Kosé’s 2019 sales declined 1.6% and its cosmetics sales declined 1.2%.
Regionally, Japan sales fell 7.3% due to the Covid-19 pandemic and other factors. In the cosmetics business, sales of Decorté, Infinity and Sekkisei Miyabi in the high-prestige category grew, but sales for Albion Co. Ltd. and Tarte Inc. experienced a downturn. In the cosmetaries business, despite strong performance by Stephen Knoll New York, the Bioliss hair care brand from Kosé Cosmeport Corp. and the Grace One aging care brand and other products, growth was negative due to a decline in inbound sales of Clear Turn and the impact of Kosé ending its licensing agreement for Rimmel.
Kosé pledged to reinforce current operations in Japan and create new value by way of partnerships including “cooperation on skin tone diagnosis” with Panasonic Corporation, a nail printer with Casio Computer Co. Ltd., and collaborations with Maruho Co., Ltd. to provide skin care cosmetics for consumers and with Sunshine Delight, Inc. on a project for UV countermeasures for children.
Elsewhere, Kosé’s Asian region sales grew 25% thanks to the expansion of duty-free stores in South Korea, along with gains in China which came as a result of strong performances turned in by Kosé’s High Prestige brands Decorté and Sekkisei Miyabi.
Sales in North America and other regions declined 1.2%, as gains in Europe were not enough to offset lower U.S. sales. Kosé said despite a prolonged slowdown in the makeup category, Tarte Inc steadily increased its presence in Europe.
In the spring, Kosé launched Tarte Sea Hydroconcealer, a vegan, oil-free, fragrance-free, sweatproof and waterproof formula featuring proprietary hydroflex technology that allows the formula to move with skin so it doesn’t cake, crease, or settle into fine lines.
In July, Kosé announced a partnership with Bellus3D, a Silicon Valley technology company to provide sheet masks tailored to each customer’s face using 3D scanning to provide their customers with a uniquely personalized beauty experience.
Kosé’s process captures a 3D scan of the customer’s face at the store, converts it to 2D data, and uses a laser processing machine to cut the sheet mask and provide it to the customer right in the store. The innovation is slated to be offered in Kosé’s Tokyo Maison concept store, which is characterized by state-of-the-art digital technology.
Acknowledging that Covid-related issues are poised to impact business for some time, Kosé forecasted net sales of ¥286.6 billion (down from ¥327.7 billion in 2019) for fiscal 2020.
In its forward-looking Vision 2026 statement, Kosé pledged to continue forward with its plan to become a global presence by accelerating globalization of brands, proactively developing unique products, and exploring new growth domains. The company also committed to stepping up its efforts in the areas of digitalization, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability, and reset its target overseas sales ratio from the previous 35% or more to 50% or more and target its e-commerce/travel retail sales ratio from 15% or more to 25% or more.
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