Sales: $2.7 billion
Key Personnel: Kazutoshi Kobayashi, president and chief executive officer; Jiro Nakabayashi, senior executive officer; Yasuhiro Kamio, senior executive officer; Tadanobu Hayashi, executive officer; Koichi Shinmoto, executive officer; Tomoyuki Nio, executive officer; Takumi Hasegawa, executive officer; Minoru Ushimura, executive officer; Akinobu Hayashi, executive officer; Noboru Matsumoto, executive officer; Shinichi Mochizuki, executive officer; Isao Fujiwara, executive officer; Noriyuki Arai, executive officer; Yoshinori Haratani, executive officer.
Major Products: Skin care, cosmetics and toiletries sold under several brand names in different sectors. High Prestige—Decorte, Jill Stuart, Sekkisei MYV, Infinity, Predia, Addiction, Paul Stuart, Awake, Tarte; Prestige—Sekkisei, One by Kosé, Shirosumi, Hadakiwami, Astablanc, Esprique, Carté Clinity, Crie, Phil Naturant, Formule, Maihada; Cosmetaries—Visée, Fasio, Elsia, Nature & Co, SportsBeauty, Nailholic, Stephen Knoll New York, Rimmel (distribution in China), Softymo, Je l’aime, Clear Turn, Suncut, Kokutousei, Grace One.
New Products: AQ skin care products, Sekkisei powder foundation, One by Kosé whitening serum, Bioliss hair care products.
Comments: Corporate sales increased nearly 14% and sales of cosmetics, which account for more than two-thirds of sales, rose more than 15% last year. Sales of cosmetaries increased nearly 9%. Both sales and operating profits reached all-time highs.
Sales in Japan increased nearly 8%, but Kosé noted that markets outside its home country accounted for nearly 25% of sales last year. International sales surged almost 37% in 2017, driven by strong growth in China and South Korea. In North America, sales increased more than 38% on the strength of the Tarte franchise. The number of stores selling Tarte reached 2,500 last year.
Looking ahead, Kosé expects sales to rise 6.5% this year, led by a 7.6% gain in cosmetics sales. The company noted, however, that its license with Rimmel London expires on Oct. 31, 2018.
Long-term, the Vision 2026 plan calls for Kosé to become a company with a global presence; one that creates a diverse range of brands backed by human resources that can succeed worldwide.
If successful, Kosé will have sales of ¥500 billion and an operating market of 16% or more by 2027. International sales will account for 35% of that total and e-commerce/new channel sales will top 15%. Five key brands will be part of that global strategy: Decorté, Sekkisei, Jill Stuart, Addiction and Clear Turn.
The global outlook extends beyond P/L. For 10 years, Kosé’s Save the Blue coral reef project has been designed to protect Okinawa’s reef. Now, the company is expanding the project to China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and the US.