Lauder Opens Research Center in China
NEW YORK — The Estée Lauder Cos. opened its first research center in China Tuesday, a step toward broadening the company’s knowledge of the important Asian market.
The 9,225-square-foot, Shanghai-based facility is Lauder’s second largest in Asia, after another in Japan, and the company’s seventh worldwide — two centers are in the U.S. and others are in Belgium, the U.K. and Canada.
“There’s a great deal of product innovation coming out of the entire Asia-Pacific region [especially] from China and Japan,” said William Lauder, president and chief executive officer of the Estée Lauder Cos. The company wanted to “establish a research facility in Shanghai to find talent and be close to the product innovation that goes on there.
“We’re going to have dedicated scientists and researchers based in this marketplace [studying] consumer desires, product knowledge and innovation coming out of the region.”
Researchers at the facility, dubbed the Estée Lauder Cos. Innovation Institute, will study the safety and efficacy of the topical use of botanical and synthetic materials. They also will focus on genetic differences in the skin’s responses to environmental stressors, as well as raw material development.
“Chinese herbal medicine has been practiced for thousands of years and there’s a great deal of wisdom and science behind these [practices],” said Lauder, who added the company stands to gain “a deeper understanding of Asian skin and what ingredients work best.”
The Shanghai facility has labs for biology research and treatment, makeup and packaging testing.
As an example of products that could be tailored for the Asian market, Lauder mentioned the whitening category. “[It] is driving a lot of innovation out of Asia because Asian consumers are sensitive to whitening products,” he said.
Initially, Southern Yangtze University will host training for Lauder’s Shanghai research group. Lauder also has established an advisory panel, called the Chinese Dermatologist Expert Panel, constituted of representatives from the China Medical University and the Beijing University Hospital.
Lauder executives were present at the opening, as were local government representatives. Cedric Prouvé, group president of Lauder’s international division, was there along with Harvey Gedeon, executive vice president of research and development for Lauder; Michel Grunberg, senior vice president for Lauder in China, and Carol Shen, Lauder’s general manager in China.
Joining them were Zhang Yixing, a representative of the Shanghai Foreign Economic Relation & Trade Commission; Shang Yuying, a representative from Pudong New District Government and Lu Fanzhou, a representative from Zhang Jiang Hi-Tech Park Group.
At least 25 locations in China carry eight Lauder brands: Estée Lauder, Clinique, MAC Cosmetics, La Mer, Bobbi Brown, Aramis, Tommy Hilfiger Toiletries and Donna Karan.
“Investing in market-specific R&D was the next logical step for us,” Lauder stated.
— Matthew W. Evans
Daub Succeeds Schaffner at Symrise
PARIS — Achim Daub has been appointed global president of the fragrance division at Symrise, succeeding Tim Schaffner, who is retiring after seven years at the Holzminden, Germany-based fragrance and flavors firm.
Schaffner “initiated important organizational changes in the fragrance division,” Symrise stated, namely restructuring Symrise’s fine fragrance and personal care divisions into one beauty care branch. He “successfully led the fragrance division” after the 2002 merger of Dragoco and Haarmann & Reimer to create Symrise, the firm said.
Daub joined Symrise in October 2004 as president of the fragrance division for its Europe, America and the Middle East sales regions, for which he will remain responsible in his new post. Before that, he held international management jobs at Procter & Gamble and Coty. Symrise generated fragrance sales of 489 million euros, or $608 million at average exchange rates, in 2004. Overall company sales stood at 1.14 billion euros, or $1.41 billion.
— Ellen Groves