The North American branch of Avon, the direct-selling company, opens its first physical space for consumers today in Los Angeles. The 19,000-square-foot location aims to be a hub and immersive experience for the brand.
“It’s not the typical brick-and-mortar that you’d imagine, but it’s a flagship for both representatives and customers,” said Avon’s president of sales Steve Bosson.
Studio 1886, as it’s called, is named after the year Avon was founded in the U.S. by David H. McConnell. The businessman began selling books, then fragrance with the help of individual salespeople. Over 100 years later, the company, which has hundreds of thousands of independent sales representatives working on commission, offers a wide range of items, from household products to personal care and beauty goods (a best-selling category) at avon.com. In 2016, the North American section of the company — the U.S., Canadian and Puerto Rican markets — was split from its global team and sold to Cerberus Capital Management, before being acquired last year by South Korean company LG Household & Health Care.
“L.A. is a great location for us,” continued Bosson. “L.A. is a little bit of a beauty hub.…The location for the studio is in Koreatown, an up-and-coming area and very beauty-centric in terms of the latest trends that come through from Korea. We want to be in a place that’s accessible.”
Located at 515 Shatto Place in Koreatown, the space will display a mix of Avon-branded products largely manufactured in the U.S., alongside a growing lineup of brands provided by LG H&H and made in South Korea. Using COVID-19 safety measures and virtual try-ons, consumers will be able to learn about and order merchandise on site, while Avon company representatives and sales leaders, who recruit the representatives, will have a chance to “feel the products,” said Bosson. The company plans to broadcast and hold product trainings in the space, as it introduces more South Korean goods to the North American market.
“We are very excited about this new chapter and are proud to create a unique space for our Avon community to connect and celebrate their love of Avon,” said Avon chief executive officer Paul Yi in a statement. “Studio 1886 will showcase Avon’s growing commitment to bringing customers and Avon representatives the top trends and innovation in beauty while driving engagement.”