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Givaudan, Tmall Launch AI-powered Fragrance Co-creation Service

The companies in June 2021 embarked on a project dubbed T-Lab in China.

PARIS — Givaudan said it has launched the first artificial intelligence-powered fragrance co-creation service with Tmall, Alibaba’s business-to-business consumer platform, in China.

The companies revealed in early June 2021 that they had partnered on what was dubbed T-Lab, meant to shorten end-to-end fragrance development to four weeks, compared with the traditional 40 weeks, in keeping with the fast-paced digital opportunities in China.

In China, where fragrance remained unpopular for many years after the Cultural Revolution in the ’60s, there has been a significant resurgence of interest in perfume.

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According to Statista, fragrance sales in China are expected to reach $1.27 billion this year, and between 2022 and 2026, the category’s compound annual growth rate is forecast to be 7.27 percent.

Givaudan said in a release Friday that it had launched a “human-machine co-creation service powered by artificial intelligence in collaboration with the Tmall Innovation Centre [or TMIC], enabling customers to realize their olfactory vision with unsurpassed sampling speed in China’s unique e-commerce market.”

For a little more than two years, Givaudan and Tmall have worked together to blend fragrance solutions and production capabilities with the T-Lab’s consumer behavior data capabilities.

“’Creatogether’ leverages the newly updated version of the TLAB 2.0, using data from TMIC’s olfactive culture map and Givaudan’s own AI-powered fragrance assistant, Carto,” Givaudan said.

The resulting process is described as a “human-machine fragrance co-creation” attainable in just five steps.

Givaudan explained that those involve the “creative ideation phase, including in-depth research and analysis; olfactive visual exploration; digital fragrance co-creation with AI instant sampling technology; commercialized fragrance submission, and finally, new product validation, launch strategy and marketing plan.”

“Our unique cocreation model allows brands to get deeply involved in the fragrance creation process. Thanks to a visual touch screen, customers are able to quickly realize their olfactory vision. The interactive process is carried out in close collaboration with our perfumers, harnessing the latest data insights from TMIC and the infinite creative capacities of Carto,” said Yaling Li, head of fragrances Greater China and South Korea at Givaudan, in the statement.

Givaudan keeps delving deeper into China. In July 2021, for instance, it said the group had invested in a Series A funding round in Next Beauty China, an incubator for emerging fragrance and beauty brands focused on expanding in the country.