L'Occitane continues to dominate US travel retail

By Louise Prance

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: New stores, Retailing

Following the launch of the France based L'Occitane stores in the
US airport DFW (Dallas Forth Worth) last year, the company has
expanded its network in the Americas and will aim to open up 25 new
airport retail stores by the end of 2007.

Intensifying its presence in America and travel retail, the company will expand on its 38 duty free stores. They will launch in Buenos Aires and Costa Rica, followed by the opening of stores in Los Angeles and San Francisco airports. Targeting Latin America and Costa Rica, the European store is consolidating its lead as one of the main travel retail cosmetic outlet stores, retailing its traditional provincial scents and textures in the new stores. In addition to the US additions to its portfolio, the company will continue developing its foothold in Europe with the fourth stand-alone travel retail store to feature in Paris, France at Charles de Gaulle airport's terminal 1 in the near future. L'Occitane, which is present all over Europe and the US and has been operating for approximately 30 years, is amongst many companies, including Estee Lauder, that derive a large percentage of sales revenue through airport purchases. A survey carried out last year on DFW passengers suggested that they are likely to spend more on health and beauty products than the national average. L'Occitane is well known as a market innovator in the cosmetics field, with the opening of the new stores no doubt set to build on its impressive portfolio in personal care manufacturing. The company set the standard in male grooming in 2005, being one of the first to produce an entirely male oriented cosmetics range, named Cade Male Cosmetics. Likewise, in the same year it launched one of the first attacks on the spa industry and set about bringing spa products into the home. They created Huile de Massage pour Homme, a massage oil that contains L'Occitane's distinctive provincial fragrances, together with pepper and nutmeg to provide what is described as a tender and sensual lotion. Both the male grooming and home spa markets are now prime sales drivers within the cosmetics industry, and more and more companies are competing to create innovative product ranges to stay ahead of competitors such as L'Occitane.

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