SÃO PAULO — O’Boticario, Natura and L’Occitane clinched the bulk of 16 prizes during Brazil’s annual Abhipec-Beleza 2014 beauty industry awards.

Approximately 550 executives attended a glittering ceremony at São Paulo’s main orchestra hall, Sala São Paulo, to honor achievement in the cosmetics, toiletries and fragrance segments of Brazil’s beauty industry, the world’s third largest.

O’Boticario took the Company of the Year prize, as well as top makeup and men’s fragrance honors for its Make B and Malbec product lines, taking the highest award numbers.

Natura was next, winning the top exporter and sustainable company prizes, followed by L’Occitane, which won prices in the body-care and men’s products categories. Cless won the entrepreneur prize, introduced this year, while L’Oréal seized the top award for hair care and treatment, the country’s best-selling category.

Roland A.J. Theil won perfumer of the year for his new Make Me Fever Gold fragrance, manufactured by Mahogany. Capuani was top fragrance house.

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Abhipec President João Carlos Basilio said the country’s main trade lobby introduced this year’s entrepreneurship award to give small and midsize companies an opportunity to be recognized while fostering their growth.

Despite a difficult economic environment, Basilio said Brazil’s CT&F [cosmetics and fragrance] circuit continues to flourish.

“This year, revenues will grow over 41 billion reals ($16 billion at current exchange), a big increase from 2013,” he said, adding that in five years, the industry has added 17 billion reals ($6.6 billion at current rates) to its coffers and now accounts for 2 percent of gross domestic product.

The Fragrance Foundation, export lobby Apex-Brazil and several companies, including newcomer specialized chemical firm Oxiteno, sponsored the awards, which featured judges from top academia, experts, journalists and other executives.

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