Road to recovery: BIOEFFECT aims to bring Asia business back to pre-pandemic levels
Founded in 2010, BIOEFFECT was the brainchild of three Icelandic scientists that discovered a way to produce epidermal growth factor (EGF) in a barley plant. This breakthrough led to the development of the brand’s bestselling product, EGF Serum.
“BIOEFFECT skin care products are the first in the world to contain a plant-based replica of a growth factor naturally found in skin, and vital to skin health,” said CEO Liv Bergþórsdóttir.
Over the last decade, the brand has been expanding globally and is now available in 27 markets worldwide, including China, Japan, Korea, and Singapore.
“We are currently focusing on strengthening our existing markets, but always open to seizing new opportunities. This especially goes for Asia where sales have grown rapidly in recent years,” said Bergþórsdóttir.
While the company has enjoyed success in Asia, sales took a “massive hit” in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Bergþórsdóttir.
Now that it is finally seeing the back of the pandemic, the company has witnessed a steady recovery in Asia, especially with the return of brick-and-mortar.
“Our online sales are ever-increasing but at the same time brick and mortar stores have finally been growing, post-COVID,” said Bergþórsdóttir.
She emphasised the importance of physical retail to the brand: “While e-commerce is convenient in many ways, interacting with our customers face to face in-stores or at special events is invaluable.
“We love to meet, convene, and converse with our clients so we are very thankful for the gradual return of offline retail. It’s safe to say that we are excited for the times ahead, being able to be in closer contact with our customers.”
At the same time, Bergþórsdóttir observed certain skin care trends that align with the brand and its products.
“We have been seeing some growing trends in the field of skin care recently. These include science-driven skincare, where scientific and medical advancements are utilised when formulating new and truly effective products…. This is perfectly in line with our own ideology, production methods, and product range. We always say that BIOEFFECT was born out of a true love for science.”
With these factors, Bergþórsdóttir believes its sales in Asia can recover to pre-pandemic levels when it accounted for 35% of the brand’s total sales. “We expect these markets to be back to that level of total sales.”
Currently, Asia accounts for 25% of its total sales.
The company’s key markets within Asia are China, Japan and Korea. Bergþórsdóttir also highlighted the importance of Singapore, which is the firm’s newest market.
“The brand was launched there during COVID, so we are excited to see the market grow once brick-and-mortar business is back on track and tourism is picking up. Singapore is an important hub for many Asian travellers and our products seem to be very suitable for Asian skin.”
In addition to market expansion, the company is also focusing on new product developments that meet the demands of Asian consumers.