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September 3, 2009

Cognis Endows University Chair

GERMANY: Cognis is endowing a chair of communications and management of chemical processes in industry at the University of Wuppertal. The endowment is intended to promote teaching, research and development activities relating to sustainable chemistry, and to strengthen the company’s ties with the university. Cognis will fund the post for three years; the cost will then be borne by the university. The professorship is dedicated to interdisciplinary research and development activities in the area of sustainable chemistry. In particular, the research will focus on how the efficient management of chemical processes can optimize resource and energy utilization. The University of Wuppertal will develop basic concepts for new products and production processes, criteria for evaluating products and processes for performance, environmental compatibility and sustainability, and ways of communicating these benefits. It is envisaged that the research will involve interdisciplinary collaboration, combining scientific, economic and engineering-related aspects.

“Sustainability is an integral part of Cognis’ business strategy, and one of the keys to our financial success,” said Hans-Helmut Heymann of the Cognis management board. “Research, development and encouraging the development of young talent in this area is therefore something very close to our hearts. This is why we have decided to further strengthen our relationship with the University of Wuppertal by endowing this professorship, so laying the foundations for further research into sustainable chemistry. We will of course also continue to offer undergraduate and graduate students from the university the opportunity to carry out project work in our company.”

Provital Inks Accord with Barcelona Farmers

SPAIN:The Provital Group, based in Barcelona, has signed an agreement with a group of farmers in La Vall del Tenes in Barcelona.The project—called BioDeVaTe—allows the farmers to increase profitability, rather than yield to extreme urban pressures arising from their proximity to Barcelona. The Provital Group will benefit by developing a source of ecological, totally traceable plant extracts as raw materials for its active ingredients. Species that will be cultivated include chamomile, rosemary, lavender and mint.

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Dr. Straetmans ExpandsDistribution Network in Asia

GERMANY: Dr. Straetmans GmbH has finalized negotiations with distribution partners in China, Turkey and Malaysia.Kalekimya, based near Istanbul, Turkey, is handling marketing and sales activities for Dr. Straetmans in Turkey.Australia-based Ingredients Plus will be the exclusive marketing and distribution firm for Dr. Straetmans` product lines in Malaysia.Dr. Straetmans has tapped Shanghai Hope for Chinese distribution.

Will Cooler Heads Prevail with Chilled Shampoos?

JAPAN: Hoping tofend off the summer heat during the dayand spur consumer spending, a new trend popped up in Japan this past summer—the ice or chilled shampoo. According to reports in The Nikkei evening edition, barbers at Hair Station Saito, a shop in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, are pouring shaved ice into a shampoo container before pouring the cool concoction on customers.

An increasing number of hair salons and barbers have been using chilled shampoo since an industry group recommended it about two years ago. The number of shops providing such services stands at 15,000 nationwide, about 15% of the total, according to Kracie Holdings Ltd., which supplies special shampoo for the purpose.

Merle Norman Opens in UAE, First Studio Outside NA

Merle Norman Cosmetics, Los Angeles, CA, has opened its first studio in the UAE, its first market outside North America.The new studio, which has an open sell environment that allows customers to see the entire product line at a glance, is in the Sharjah Mega Mall. Another shop is set open on Jumeirah Beach Road before the end of the year, according to published reports.

“Our offerings of superior products, individualized service and sampling prior to purchase philosophy, will cater to the quality conscious customers in this region,” said Mamta Thakkar, general manager, Merle Norman Cosmetics. Merle Norman has more than 2000 independently owned and operated Merle Norman Cosmetic Studios in the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

Skin-Whitening Conference at In-Cosmetics Asia, Oct. 14

In-Cosmetics Asia, which will be held Oct. 13-15 in Singapore, will include a special conference on skin whitening. Scheduled for Oct. 14, the conference will be essential for those within the industry wanting to update their knowledge of this lucrative market. Scheduled presentations will come from Croda, DSM Nutritional Products and Shiseido, among others. The conference will examine the differing methods used to whiten the skin, from melanin to skin stress control, UV protection and exfoliation as well as formulation compatibility and efficacy testing. Safety profiles, regulatory approval and claim substantiation will also be addressed, as well as the availability and affordability of skin whitening products in Asia’s key markets. The wide range of topics ensures that the delegates will benefit from a complete overview of the latest developments, formulations and technologies.

Dr. Shinji Inomata, senior manager, functional cosmetic Ingredient Development Group, Shiseido, is giving the keynote presentation on the “Dermatological Function of Dark Spots.”Other presenters include Dr. Alain Khaiat, president of Seers Consulting, who will discuss the “Regulation of Skin-Whitening Products,” John Staton, director, Dermatest Pty Ltd, who will examine “Efficacy Testing of Skin-Whitening Products,” and Hong Soh Bee, technical marketing manager at Sederma, who will present “A Tissue Approach to Whitening.”

The skin whitening market has been growing steadily since the early 1970s. The sector offers immense commercial opportunities, with many of the world’s leading cosmetic companies launching products specifically designed for Asian consumers. The conference is ideal for formulators, bench chemists and R&D specialists as well as application chemists responsible for regulatory and efficacy processes.

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Winning Brands Expands in Australia, Caribbean

CANADA: Winning Brands Corp., the Canadian manufacturer of Winning Colours Stain Remover, has expanded its reach in Australia and the caribbean. The firm has added more outlets via Australia’s 3D Paint & Colour stores. The Ontario-based company has also received its first order from Anguilla.

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