Oriflame's chief executive Magnus Brannstrom recently spoke to the press about expanding into these regions: “They are huge direct selling markets with a very high degree of innovation and with many new companies in the US,” he said in an interview with Helena Soderpalm of Reuters.
Organic growth is a priority for the publically traded Swedish beauty brand. But, executives are not ruling acquisitions out. “It could be however that either you can't get into a market, or there's a new product you want to have. Then [acquisitions] might be interesting,” Brannstrom tells that publication.
Oriflame sells everything from skin care and hair to color cosmetics and beauty tools to men’s grooming and fragrance. The company is over 40 years old and counts more than 3m selling agents in its ranks.
Russia had previously been the company’s biggest market. Though for several quarters now, economic crisis has substantially impacted Oriflame’s business there and in the Ukraine.
The company remains dedicated to emerging markets and tells Reuters that “China or India would probably overtake Russia to become the company's biggest market over the long term,” and that “Turkey and Mexico are also major markets.”
Sooner or later
Brannstrom tells the press that Oriflame may be selling in North and South America within three years. Though it’s not something the company is going to move on fast: “We're obviously not opening up in the United States during 2016 and I would be incredibly surprised if we did so in 2017,” he says.
Soderpalm points out how counterintuitive this decision to expand into the Americas may seem given recent developments in the direct-sales beauty industry here. “Its plans for the United States contrast with Avon, which is downsizing in its home market and recently sold most of its North American business,” she affirms.
Avon’s sales to Cerberus Capital Management was finalized this month. And, the North American business is now operating as New Avon LLC.