Shiseido Co., the largest cosmetics company in Japan, is making a comeback in the Indian market by launching its first makeup brand in nearly a decade. The company plans to introduce its popular line NARS Cosmetics to beauty shops in India, aiming to tap into the country’s thriving consumer market.

To make this venture possible, Shiseido has collaborated with Indian retailer Shoppers Stop Ltd.’s Global SS Beauty Brands. Together, they plan to open 14 stores in New Delhi and Mumbai this year. Additionally, the company will market NARS through Sephora shops, which is owned by LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE.

Nicole Tan, head of Asia Pacific at Shiseido, highlighted that Indian consumers have a significant interest in color cosmetics. Products like eyeshadow, lipstick, and blush are particularly popular. The company aims to target consumers who are seeking individuality, especially in the higher-end, premium prestige segments.

Global brands are increasingly attracted to India, as they foresee the potential in the country’s young shoppers and growing affluence. According to a report by research firm Mordor Intelligence, India’s cosmetic products market is projected to grow by 4.2% annually over the next five years, primarily driven by the popularity of color cosmetics.

For Shiseido, the launch of NARS Cosmetics in India presents an opportunity to diversify its earnings. In the first half of the year, the company generated 25% of its sales in Japan, a similar percentage in China, and 6.2% in the rest of the Asia-Pacific region. By entering the Indian market, Shiseido aims to balance its revenue streams and reduce dependence on specific markets.

This move into India follows Shiseido’s previous retreat from the market. The company closed its subsidiary selling Za cosmetics in 2015, shortly after entering the Indian market, due to underwhelming performance.

The success of NARS Cosmetics in India may influence Shiseido’s future offerings. Tan revealed that the company plans to introduce more brands to the Indian market, driven by the increasing demand from tech-savvy consumers who are well-informed about international brands through the internet and social media.

While India holds significant potential as a market, Tan acknowledges that it requires investment, nurturing, and gradual growth. Shiseido is committed to the long-term development of its presence in India and recognizes the need to cater to the specific demands and preferences of Indian consumers.

Overall, Shiseido’s decision to launch NARS Cosmetics in India reflects its confidence in the country’s beauty and personal care industry. With a strong emphasis on individuality and premium products, Shiseido aims to make a lasting impression on Indian beauty enthusiasts and establish itself as a key player in the market.

Useful links:
1. Shiseido official website
2. Mordor Intelligence report on India’s cosmetics market