French cosmetics and beauty major L’Oreal, which aims to add more than one billion new consumers globally over the next decade, believes a significant contribution will come from India. The company has been focussing on strategies to make its products more accessible and relevant for Indian consumers with customisation and launch of smaller packs and sachets of its products in recent times.

Jean-Christophe Letellier, Managing Director, L’Oreal India, said: “We believe India will continue to be a strong engine of growth for the worldwide beauty market. We believe it’s just the beginning in terms of trends such as individualisation and premiumisation of usage of beauty products, which will be triggers for accelerated growth of the segment and help India take its rightful place in the global beauty market.”

The company aims to grow faster than the market on the back of development of key categories such as hair colour, hair care, cosmetics and skincare.

“We are focusing on transforming the hair colour market and development of the make-up market, which has been growing very fast in India. With the launch of Garnier Ultra Blends we believe we are now in the new phase of development of the hair care category, and at the same time, we are growing the skincare market with special focus on products for men,” he added.

Letellier said that the launch of its global hair care range Garnier Ultra Blends is part of the company’s “universalisation” strategy through which it offers global brands but are customised to meet the needs of the local consumers.

Smaller markets

The company expects to cater to the growing need of consumers for natural products with this new paraben-free range of shampoos, conditioners and treatments, which comes with ingredients such as henna and almond.

Asked if the company expects to see growth from smaller markets, Letellier said, “Our primary objective will be to continue to grow in the urban market as there is still a huge potential. At the same time, we still have a lot do to grow in smaller cities of India, as we now have better access to consumers through growth in retail.”

Talking about rural markets, he said, “Rural consumers now increasingly have access to smartphones and e-commerce. We believe we will have a key role to play in converting the basic cosmetics usage of rural consumers as they upgrade to more sophisticated usage. We want to be the champion of this consumer transformation, as we will focus to become more accessible to rural consumers through e-commerce and wholesale retail.”