“Korea is the most innovative country for cosmetics,” enthused Daniel Kim, Sales Manager for the Korean arm of Evonik.
Commenting on how “many Asian countries look at Korea as a global marketplace in its own right”, ever since it emerged onto the scene with make up-must BB creams, the East Asia beauty magnate has explored innovative ingredients, multifunctional items, the growing face mask trend and cultural marketing stories.
Korean culture stories
History and traditional are increasingly present in promoting Korean-inspired products. New differentiated producers and items that focus on fermentation and origin on a cultural and regional scale are prevalent.
The German-headquartered company recognises pockets of trends in various regions around the globe. “Evonik’ speciality business dominates in Korea,” Kim shared. With skin care dominating consumer choice and the cosmetics segment, customers want specialities, namely emulsifiers and active ingredients.
Producers need to consider origin, particularly botanicals as consumers are searching for those cosmetics ingredients with milder and natural properties.
Significantly short launch cycles are now expected in Korea, and so brands are adopting strategic plans that incorporate market research, expedient market testing period, the use of fermentation materials and audience-specific, modern marketing concepts.
Consumers are now used to, and expect, faster release times for new formulations. Beauty buyers also actively seek out new developments. Merging the natural and sensory trends that enable shoppers to try before they buy is now commonplace in Korea.
Silicone demand in China
Korea is a core market in Asia-Pacific (APAC), followed by China. The global silica manufacturer confirmed its expansion and interest in China by announcing its joint venture with Chinese company Wynca.
As Evonik gears up to address new capacities to meet the demand for silicones, adhesives and sealants and paints and coatings, it will establish its new fumed silica production facility planned in Zhenjiang, China.
“Asia, especially China is a key growth region for Evonik. The new joint venture proves that Evonik is committed to grow our business in China by continuous investment and cooperation with local partners,” added Claas Klasen, President of Evonik’s Asia Pacific North region.
Under the new name, Aerosil, the company, of which Evonik holds 60%, will develop produce fumed silica, ideal for transparent silicones, coatings and paints, modern adhesives as well as non-combustible insulation materials.
"The production site for silica in China will enable us to supply our high-quality products to the growing Asian market with significantly shorter transport routes,” said Johannes Ohmer, member of the Board of Management of Evonik Resource Efficiency GmbH.
Future growth plans
"Korean customers are innovative, which can be challenging," Kim revealed. In future, Evonik will continue to focus on specialities, evolving special emulsifiers, actives, conditioning agents and multifunctional materials.
Providing a glimpse into the next step in fermentation, Kim revealed that sugar-based fermentation is showing promise by indicating good performance. Different materials are hard to develop and brands are devising a strategy for this form of fermentation to appeal to the luxury market.
There are significant opportunities in skin care for Evonik. To cater to this sector and its consumers, Evonik plans to continue to introduce new products, develop existing items and increase brand awareness.
Silica is considered one of the company’s smart materials, as Evonik anticipates it will experience margin potential and above-average market growth, it revealed in a recent press release.