The company officially launched the brand in Beijing at the end of last week in a ceremony in Beijing that was attended by celebrities and media representatives, the Korea Herald reported.
The brand is launching its highly popular Kakao Friends edition of cosmetics on the market, in the hope that the brand’s “cute” cartoon-like characters will resonate with Chinese consumers.
Started life as a phone app
The brand started off as Kakao Friends emoticons used for Kakao Talk, the Korean equivalent of Whatsapp that has been underscored by runaway success thanks to the seven quirky characters that provide give the emoticons a special brand of personality.
These characters include a GMP peach, a radish in a rabbit outfit and a secret agent hip-hop diva mole who were given a new dimension when South Korean brand VDL collaborated to release an edition of Kakao Friends make-up products that includes perfumed hand cream, lipsticks and a collection of eye shadow pots.
The line was launched by Face Shop in Korea back in March of 2016, and its success has led to a break out of launches in Singapore, Vietnam, the United States and now China.
Face Shop drives Korean cosmetic sales
The Face Shop Franchise was started in Seoul back in 2003 and has been expanded into a global franchise that includes more than a 1,000 stores worldwide, with locations in Mongolia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, UAE, United States, Costa Rica, and Vietnam, to name a few.
It has also made a big mark in Australia, where stores currently amount to a total of 11 and more are planned. Currently four of those stores are in Sydney, all stocking a wide selection of skin and body care, hair care and colour cosmetic products from a number of the biggest brand owners in South Korea.
Such has been the success of Korea’s cosmetics export market, the industry is now ranked alongside the country’s other biggest exports, which include technology, electrical and automotive, although the category did not make the top ten list of exports in 2015, when total exports were estimated to be valued at $527 billion.