US-based market research firm Kline & Company is to undertake a study to investigate trends and opportunities among manufacturers of specialty active ingredients for the cosmetic and toiletries industries.
According to Kline, the study will estimate the current and forecast size of the US and Western European markets for specialty actives and active delivery systems, predict demand growth drivers, and evaluate opportunities for strategic alliances, technology licensing, and acquisitions.
In the competitive arena of the cosmetics and toiletries industry, the most advanced weapons in a cosmetic and toiletry marketer's arsenal have always been specialty actives, explain Kline's reserchers. The race is now heating up as never before, they continue, with mass-market and direct-marketing companies joining the fray. These companies have joined prestige and professional skin care marketers in using specialty actives and alternate delivery systems to increase market share, to extend the life of existing lines, and to fend off encroaching dermatologist brands.
The market for specialty active ingredients - compounds that provide ademonstrable therapeutic effect on the skin or hair - and the systems used to deliver these ingredients, has exploded in the last few years. According toestimates by Kline, the market for these materials and associated technologies is currently valued at more than $300 million (€254.6m) at the manufacturers' level and is still on the rise.
To date, the key focus has been on formulated products that delay the natural ageing process, protect skin and hair from the environment, and promote wellness. In the United States alone, the market for anti-aging skin care products is valued at more than $1.3 billion at the retail level and is growing at double-digit rates, according to Kline's estimates.
"It's not enough anymore to offer cosmetics that make women look younger by masking signs of aging," said Gillian Morris, chemicals industry manager for Kline's research division. "Now even commodity C&T marketers are promising that their products will truly diminish signs of ageing, and consumers are coming to expect it as a basic feature."
This lasting trend toward active ingredients has energised both sides ofthe market, according to Morris."On the demand side, C&T marketers in every sales channel are constantly trying to keep one step ahead of the competition, looking for new actives that will allow them to differentiate their products," said Morris. "They're not only using these actives to generate new product lines, they're also adding them to extend the life of their traditional lines."
"On the supply side, firms that supply raw materials to the C&T industryare scrambling to meet the demand for better and newer specialty actives," she added. "They're also looking over their shoulder and are creating strategies to protect their slice of the pie from their competitors."
For many suppliers of basic raw materials to the C&T industry, thelearning curve involved in offering specialty actives and delivery systems has been a steep one, says Kline. They have had to form strategic alliances or acquire firms that have already developed the important technology and marketing skills required to participate in this dynamic market segment.
Kline's new study 'Competitive intelligence in specialty actives and active delivery systems for cosmetics and toiletries: US and Western Europe' aims to help these specialty companies discern the trends and opportunities available to them.
Established in 1959, Kline & Company is an international market research and business consulting firm serving the specialty raw materials, specialty chemicals, and cosmetics and toiletries industries.