‘Moving fast’: Coty touts e-commerce as ‘strategic growth pillar’ for SEA fragrance ambitions

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Coty Inc says e-commerce will be crucial in the South East Asian market. [Coty / Chloé Fragrances]
Coty Inc says e-commerce will be crucial in the South East Asian market. [Coty / Chloé Fragrances]

Related tags e-commerce Fragrance Perfume Fine fragrance SEA Coty

American multinational Coty Inc says e-commerce will be crucial in the South East Asian market as it aims to deliver “high double-digit growth” for its portfolio of fragrance brands.

“Coty is well-positioned for the future, now it’s about moving fast to explore all the opportunities which present themselves,” ​said Kristina Strunz, vice president sales, Coty South East Asia.

One of the big opportunities for the firm was tapping into was the rapidly growing e-commerce space, a realm which till now, has not been suited to sell fragrances.

“Traditionally, it has been a challenge for the fragrance category to adapt to e-commerce. However, the pandemic has accelerated digital shopping habits over the past two years with shoppers now expecting to be able to find prestige brands online and purchase them conveniently,” ​Strunz told CosmeticsDesign-Asia.

She highlighted that the key change has been the ability for them to trial fragrances through scent discovery kits before moving on to full-sized products and gift sets.

“It says much about the emergence of e-commerce as a viable retail channel for fragrances that Coty has identified it as a strategic growth pillar in South East Asia,” ​said Strunz.

With the reopening of many countries across SEA, Strunz said the firm was “presented with a great opportunity to re-engage with shoppers”.

To capitalise on this, the company unveiled its first official digital flagship store for Chloé Fragrances in May with leading SEA e-commerce platform, Lazada.

This online touchpoint would serve as a “convenient destination for gifting”​ for commercial peaks such as Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day, said Strunz.

Additionally, it allows the cosmetics firm to tap into the major opportunities, such as recruiting a younger generation of consumers, notably the Gen Zs, as well as male consumers.

“We will also look to widen our reach to target those who prefer to discover their unique scent in the comfort and privacy of their homes,”​ said Strunz.

More brands to follow

Chloé Fragrances is only the beginning for Coty as it works to develop its digital footprint across the region.

“This will see us introduce a wide range of fragrances online, Chloé Fragrances being just the start. Our next focus will be on our number male pillar Hugo Boss, launching regionally in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore during the summer,” ​said Strunz.

“Lastly, we are working on launching some more exciting brands during Q4 right in time for all the upcoming commercial e-commerce festivals. To give you a sneak peek; in August we will be back with another blockbuster fragrance launch building on last year’s success of Gucci Gorgeous Gardenia fragrance fronted by Miley Cyrus.”

In addition to new products, Strunz also teased several campaigns that will take place in Singapore.

“Coming up, we have some exciting online-to-offline campaigns planned for the second half of 2022 for our ultra-prestige and fashion fragrance portfolio here in Singapore, in collaboration with TANGS, Paragon and Takashimaya malls.”

She added that the firm has plans in place to deliver high double-digit growth year-on-year for the fragrance category in SEA, with the overall market on a mid-double-digit growth trajectory.

“Having already surpassed significantly our pre-COVID sales levels, we are on the right path to accelerate Coty’s footprint with the aim to be a leading group in this region,”​ said Strunz.

Beyond SEA, Coty is also eyeing potential in the wider Asian region, including the Indian market.

“We have the emerging middle-classes in countries like India, Indonesia, and Malaysia, with India and Indonesia particularly being cultures where fragrance plays an integral role. This gives us the opportunity to offer different scents and allows the consumer to express themselves through varied fragrance personalities at a range of price points, from lifestyle to niche fragrances,”​ said Strunz.

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