POLA arrives in Hainan: Luxury skin care brand set to rapidly expand its duty-free footprint following launch

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

POLA aiming to capitalise on the growing popularity in China [POLA]
POLA aiming to capitalise on the growing popularity in China [POLA]

Related tags China hainan Travel retail pola orbis

Pola Orbis Holdings is aiming to capitalise on the growing popularity of the POLA brand in China by launching up to five additional doors on Hainan Island this year.

POLA is a high-end skin care brand and the flagship of the Japanese cosmetics maker. It is set to launch into Hainan Island for the first time in July.

In line with the company’s plan to rapidly expand in the popular holiday destination, the company said it would continue to grow its footprint in downtown and airport shops.

This expansion follows the tremendous success of POLA in the Chinese market in recent months.

In the first quarter of this year, sales of the brand increased by 120% – approximately JPY1.35bn (U$12.2m) – compare to the same period of the previous year. The company said it saw growth from both its brick-and-mortar and e-commerce channels.

It attributed POLA’s high growth rate to its growing reputation in China as an ultra-prestige skin care brand that’s backed by high-tech skin science.

“POLA resonates with Chinese customers who are seeking a luxurious high technology skin care that provides a sensorial usage experience with highly efficacious results. The BA series is highly popular with Chinese consumers with the BA Lotion and Wash being the most favourite items,” ​said Mengfuan Tan, director, POLA ORBIS Travel Retail Limited.

Despite the implications of COVID-19, the company expects POLA sales to increase every quarter this fiscal year.

The company is preparing to launch new products in the second half of the fiscal year, including the addition of new items for the B.A. series in July.

Aside from POLA, the company also believes there is huge potential for Jurlique, its organic skin care offering.

Jurlique was founded in Australia in the 1980s and was acquired by Pola Orbis in 2011 for a reported U$300m to strengthen its position in Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia.

The brand has been present in Hainan since 2014 and posted strong growth rates in 2021 as a result of its drive to increase the brand’s awareness in China, which included e-commerce initiatives such as live streaming.

“We would like to continue this momentum and make Jurlique the desired holistic brand for conscious consumers who want natural skin care with sustainable values,” ​said Tan.

These results are driving the company to make China a “priority market” ​and expand its contact points with Chinese consumers.

“China is a very important market for our group, not only POLA but also Jurlique and other brands. Therefore, we are aiming for a sustainable and successful business expansion on both of China and duty-free business,”​ said Tan.

While the travel retail market is currently experiencing difficult conditions due to a significant reduction in international flights, China’s travel retail market has experienced a boom thanks to domestic tourism.

In January, the company established a dedicated travel retail business based in Hong Kong specifically with the objective to grow its footprint in China through its lucrative travel retail market.

By fostering the growth of its brands in China, the company is gearing up to take on the international market once global travel resumes post-pandemic.

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