Estée Lauder takes a stake in Korea's 'Dr. Jart+' to compete with K-beauty demand

By Michelle Yeomans

- Last updated on GMT

Estée Lauder takes a stake in Korea's 'Dr. Jart+' to compete with K-beauty demand

Related tags Estée lauder Skin care Korea Estée lauder companies

After last year's announcement that it will 'embrace South Korea's trends and technology' in order to compete, Estée Lauder has taken a stake in its first Korean brand - 'Have & Be', the owner of 'Dr. Jart+' and 'Do The Right Thing'.

While Estée Lauder's Clinique brand was the first to bring BB creams to the US, the company has experienced South Korea's domination in skin care in recent years and has been looking for a way to gain more of a footing among the country's most innovative beauty products.

Enter Seoul-based, global skin care player - Dr. Jart+. The brand’s fusion of dermatological science and art is reported to be a pioneer in the development of BB creams that appeal to a broad range of consumers, especially millennials.

"Global consumers look to Korea as a trendsetting market in beauty, and the Dr. Jart+ brand is part of the reason why​,” says William P. Lauder, executive chairman of The Estée Lauder Companies.

[Both companies] share an entrepreneurial heritage as well as a commitment to innovation and creativity. We have great respect for this brand, and we appreciate the opportunity to support and advise Mr. Lee and his team as they continue to grow Dr. Jart+ globally,” ​he adds.

'Promising growth'

The deal will be complete by December and will give Estée Lauder the very opportunity its been looking for to develop a partnership with one of Korea’s most promising high-growth skin care brands.

The investment also includes an interest in 'Do The Right Thing', a men’s-focused skin care brand that fuses Korean innovation with a bold New York style.

Founded by ChinWook Lee in 2012, the line of cleansers, lotions, moisturizers and serums are sold in Korea through various channels and in the United States through Sephora and BirchboxMan.

K-beauty phenomenon 

Korea’s commitment to beauty is a cut above the rest in Asia where it is leading the way with some serious brainpower and cool technology.

And when it comes to personal care and beauty, this hefty R&D spend yields cutting-edge advances in ingredients and formulation – from nanotechnology to stem-cell related actives and growth factors. 

The country's beauty launches have been categorized by trends like 'K-Pop' which are heavily influenced by flamboyant male pop icons, the alphabet craze known as 'BB' (et al) creams, and more generally 'K-Beauty' which refers to Korea's influence on the West's skin care developments. 

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