By  on February 7, 2014

The indie spirit is getting infectious.

Not only is there a building surge of startups by young entrepreneurs, but a handful of major companies, searching for fresh ponds of innovation and newfound relevance, hope to find growth by tapping into the consumer’s reawakened appetite for novelty by incubating their own hatchling brands. For example, L’Oréal acquired Baxter of California, a small men’s personal-care brand, last year, and more recently entered the world of YouTube creating from scratch Michelle Phan’s EM makeup brand—doing all this in addition to acquiring Urban Decay, an original indie dating back to 1996. Meanwhile, Unilever has developed Iluminage, a brand of personal-care topical and laser devices, and Sephora has produced an ambitious color cosmetics brand by Marc Jacobs, as well as a raft of other projects.

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