BEAUTE LUXE accelerates Africa ambitions with strategic investments

By Trbusiness Editor |

BEAUTE LUXE

Left: A BEAUTE LUXE showcase at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, India. Right: BEAUTE LUXE CEO David Dayan.

It has been a positive year for fragrances and cosmetics distributor BEAUTE LUXE, a specialist within the Africa market.

“After the pandemic, travel has re-started in Africa much more quickly than we expected,” the company’s Chief Executive Officer David Dayan told TRBusiness.

Business has been “very good”, but the type of travelling consumer is not the same, he stressed, which has prompted the company to review and adjust its product portfolio accordingly.

“What is different pre- and post-Covid is that now, more and more African people are travelling within the continent, and a lot of local airlines are opening up routes inside Africa,” he explained.

“While that translates into a great business for us in travel retail, it means we have had to change our assortments.”

In general, there are still fewer international travellers than before, although Dayan observes that in certain locations, such as Zanzibar, international tourism has already started to recover.

In other locations, BEAUTE LUXE has tweaked its offer, focusing more on the luxury brands that are popular with African travellers, in order to appeal to these new consumers.

Promoting partnerships

The second significant initiative implemented by BEAUTE LUXE post-pandemic is a programme of investment dedicated to upgrading the in-store environment.

BEAUTE LUXE

A glimpse of what the company has to offer at Entebbe International Airport in Uganda.

“Obviously, Covid was very difficult for retailers, so we decided to help them by investing in new furniture for their airport stores,” Dayan explained.

The distributor has invested heavily in new back wall fixtures and fittings for its L’Oréal Group brands, such as Armani, Lancôme and Yves Saint Laurent. BEAUTE LUXE has also financed a number of in-store Beauty Advisors, to help drive sales.

“It was very obvious to me that after Covid, we needed to reinvest in the channel, to help the retailers and evolve the business,” Dayan observed.

“As a distributor, we operate in many different countries, so we have the capacity to be agile, to change direction as conditions dictate, according to our targets. It’s not the same for the retailers.”

Hence, BEAUTE LUXE decided to invest, “for the benefit of everyone”.

Potential and premiumisation

In line with its ambitious expansion plans for the continent, BEAUTE LUXE has renovated 17 airport locations in Africa, most notably with new-style L’Oréal Group merchandising.

BEAUTE LUXE

A BEAUTE LUXE store at Jaipur International Airport, India.

Our target for this year, and for 2024, is to make the stores more premium,” noted Dayan. “We see so much potential in this market. As brands seek new opportunities to grow their turnover, Africa has emerged as one of the territories they can upgrade, in terms of both image and sales.”

Major African airport expansion/renovation projects – Dayan cited Rwanda and Zambia as just two examples – will deliver exciting new opportunities in travel retail.

“Some of these new terminals are very beautiful, and will allow us to really showcase the brands,” he explained. “We are very happy to invest in upgrading the quality of the stores – and the service – because we want African passengers to have the same experiences as their European counterparts. We also want to organise animations and pop-ups.”

India expansion

Outside Africa, BEAUTE LUXE extended its reach in India in 2022 via a new partnership with Beauty Concepts. High quality duty paid perfumery-style stores are the key focus for this alliance.

“India has been a huge success so far,” Dayan revealed. “We are present in airports such as New Delhi and Jaipur, with many more openings planned. Our target is to finalise around 20 new openings by the end of 2024.”

This interview originally appears in the TRBusiness November/December ezine.

READ MORE: Beaute Luxe to distribute Paris Hilton and Kenneth Cole in Africa travel retail

READ MORE: Beauté Luxe to distribute Mäurer & Wirtz’s brands in Africa

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