Botanika Marrakech ‘very confident’ on Asia entry with Japan as first target
Botanika Marrakech is one of the two labels from Ircos Laboratoires, a Moroccan firm with more than 15 years of experience in developing high-end beauty products with natural active ingredients
The brand features natural Moroccan ingredients such as Argan oil and Argan leaf extract. It is currently available in Morocco and Europe where it claims to be performing very well.
The company has recently appointed Toyko-based Nomade Japan as its distributor for the Asian region.
Aarju Adhikari, executive director of Nomade Japan, told CosmeticsDesign-Asia that Japan would be the regional headquarters for Botanika Marrakech as it plots to expand its footprint around Asia.
“We are entering Japan first because this market is a really good starting point. If you can make it in Japan, all the other countries in Asia will follow because most of them look to Japan as an example,” said Adhikari.
Drumming up interest
Adhikari revealed that brand has received plenty of interest during the three days at industry show Cosme Tokyo 2020.
“The goal for this show was to introduce the brand to the market but we’ve already had some good offers from big companies, department stores that have expressed interest in carrying the brand.”
However, she said that the company has not registered its products for sale in Japan yet.
“We should be able to get them registered by 2020. Once that is done, hopefully, we will be able to enter the Japanese market in a year.”
Once the products are ready for market, the company’s main focus will be to boost the brand’s retail presence in department stores.
“We will be online, but we will mainly focus on physical retail because these are products you need to see, feel and smell to experience,” said Adhikari.
Adhikari said the positive response from Cosme Tokyo 2020 has reinforced the company’s confidence that the brand would do well in the Asian market.
She elaborated that consumers were looking for new and natural products such as Argan oil, prickly pear oil and African black soap.
“Our products and the ingredients we use are very unique for the market. For example, a lot of people are interested in Argan oil. It is not something they have a lot of, so they are more interested.”
At the same time, she added that consumers want their natural products to be highly effective.
“They are looking for ingredients that are simple and easy to understand but also high performing, just like Argan oil. A lot of the time, Argan oil is not produced well but we can guarantee its purity because we produce it ourselves.”
Aside from interests among Japanese firms, the brand has been approached by companies from China, Hong Kong and Singapore.
“To be honest, we are interested in exploring all these markets. China is obviously a big market for cosmetics. We will look into the interest from Singapore and Hong Kong because these markets are easier to enter,” said Adhikari.