August means the annual publication of the WWD Beauty Biz Top 100, a ranking of the world's biggest beauty companies. A truly mammoth undertaking overseen by our European beauty editor Jennifer Weil, the Top 100 is an unsparing look at the year that was, based solely on sales figures. The 2009 edition demonstrates the impact of the economic recession in stark terms. Of the top 10 companies, only one—number three–ranked Unilever—posted a sales increase for the year. (In comparison, in last year's Top 10, eight posted sales gains.) Others, including the top-ranked L'Oréal, reported their first loss in years. In all, 49 companies increased their sales in 2009, 47 suffered a decrease and four companies were flat compared with 2008, when 74 companies were up, 15 were down and 11 were flat. The total $140.78 billion in sales generated by the 100 companies combined was down 16.3 percent in 2009 versus 2008.
The news coming from the list isn't all grim, however. Companies based in emerging markets, particularly Brazil, China and India, posted impressive growth rates. Many direct-sales companies around the world also weathered the storm, reporting sizable increases in their number of sales representatives and in overall product sales, including Brazil-based Natura Cosméticos, up 18.6 percent to claim the number-15 spot, and number-22 Peru-based Belcorp International, up 12.5 percent. The three companies on the list that are based in South Korea all fared extremely well—number-20 Pacific Corp., number-34 LG Household & Health Care and number-88 Able C&C posted increases of 20.7 percent, 9.5 percent and 79.1 percent, respectively. Discover who's on top—and who's not.
Steve Aoki held a presentation, a runway show and outdoor concert for his men's line Dim Mak. Here's a look from his spring 2018 collection, which was titled "Paradise Found." #wwdfashion #wwdmens (📷: George Chinsee)
"It's really hard sometimes. I think I have a reputation for being really tough and aggressive and pushy but I really am a very shy person who wants to be liked, and that's the conflict constantly. There's something that takes hold - I want people to like me, I don't want to be mean - but if I see something that just cries out to be answered, I go for it," says renowned NBC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell. (📷: @axeldupeux)